New Leadership Grounded in the Historical Roots of our Courts.
Endorsed by the Knox County Republican Party
Member NRA, Knox County Farm Bureau, Ohio Sheep Improvement Association, Liberty Township Zoning Commission
Ohio University, 1979, B.A. History, Summa Cum Laude
Dickinson School of Law, 1982, J.D.
33 Years of Legal Experience in the courts of Ohio
Admitted in Ohio, U.S. District Court (S.D. Ohio), U.S. Court of Appeals (Sixth Circuit), U.S. Supreme Court
Married 32 years to Diana, with two adult children and one granddaughter

The Wetzel name is part of Knox County history, according to the 1881 edition of the History of Knox County, compiled by N.N. Hill. In 1795, after the Treaty of Greenville, a Wetzel (one of my ancestors) was one of six scouts dispatched from Fort Pitt under the command of Captain Samuel Brady to patrol the area for compliance with the terms of the peace treaty. The scouts came up Owl Creek and passed through the area where Mount Vernon now stands. The Wetzels have been in the service of the people of Knox County as early as 1795, and I aim to continue that tradition as the next Common Pleas Judge.


Over the past 33 years of practicing law, my experience has covered a wide variety of cases in many different courts in our state. From Cleveland to Cincinnati, from Lancaster to Woodsfield, from Marysville to Mount Vernon, and courts in between, my practice has included a very broad and diverse range of cases in criminal law (jury and bench trials), and civil cases (jury and bench trials) for clients from all walks of life. My civil law practice has included court cases involving real estate, oil and gas, small governments (townships and villages, water  and sewer districts), election law,  contract disputes, insurance claims, surety claims, medical malpractice claims, professional liability claims, domestic relations, child custody, small business and corporate disputes, non-profit organizations, residential and commercial leases, grain elevators, farm partnerships, personal injury, employment disputes, foreclosures, debtors and creditors, and family feuds. I have appeared in the Ohio Supreme Court, Federal Court, and the Federal Court of Appeals. I am the contact partner for our firm as Special Counsel to Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine.


I started in the small town of McConnelsville, in Morgan County. I graduated from Morgan High School in 1975. After graduating from Ohio University summa cum laude in 1979, I received my juris doctorate from Dickinson Law School, in Carlisle, Pennsylvania in 1982. After law school, I returned to McConnelsville to open my own law office. 


In 1983, I married my wife, Diana. In 1984, Diana and I moved to Columbus when I joined my current law firm, where I have continued my law practice for the past 31 years. We have two adult children, and one grandchild. Diana is the Client Services Director at Starting Point, a local non-profit in Mount Vernon formerly known as Care Net.

In 2012, Diana and I decided it was time to move outside of “the donut” of 270 in Franklin County.  We sold our house where we raised our children, and began looking for some land in a rural setting. Finally, in March of 2013, we found a home here in Knox County on Pleasant Valley Road. After having worked with various people around Knox County for about 13 years, it made sense to locate here permanently. I already knew many people in the community, so I got involved in local affairs as a resident. The Liberty Township Trustees appointed me to the Liberty Township Zoning Commission in late 2013. I was also appointed to fill a vacancy on the Knox County Republican Central Committee in 2014. 


In May of 2015, I felt called to serve the community when I learned that the Honorable Judge Eyster would be retiring and his bench would be open on the Court of Common Pleas at the end of 2016. In June of 2015, I approached several leaders in the community and they encouraged me to run for election to the Court. After that, my friend Doug Leonard agreed to be my Campaign Treasurer. Since then, I have been making the rounds in our county, talking to our elected officials and citizens about the importance of electing the most qualified and experienced lawyer to the Common Pleas Court.


Over the past 33 years of legal experience across the state, I have learned what it takes to make a good judge. I want to become a part of the team that provides good government to the people of Knox County.




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