A former owner of the Pour House, a popular bar in Five Points that was closed down after police called it a nuisance, is asking a Richland County court to throw out portions of a USC student’s lawsuit against him, saying they exist only to humiliate the owners, tarnish their reputations, raise passions and inflame the media.
Wells’ motion, filed June 15 in circuit court, argues that the suit by student Ryan Chisolm includes statements and testimony that is “nothing more than redundant, immaterial, impertinent or scandalous.”
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The Chisolm lawsuit alleges the bar had an established pattern of negligence dating to 2006, including under a previous owner. The suit named Wells, the Pour House, BB&A Entertainment and Wells Fargo as defendants.
In the complaint, Wells also is accused of battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress and false imprisonment of Chisolm.
Wells accuses Chisolm of interjecting the issue of race where none exists in an attempt to “create passion, caprice or emotion in the media.”
Quotes from people who did not witness the incident but are included in the lawsuit are immaterial to the complaint and only seek to “incite publicity ... and tarnish a defendant with irrelevant scandalous and immaterial information,” the motion argues in asking that 30+ paragraphs be thrown out.
Wells, 29, has been charged by Columbia police with assault and battery of a high and aggravated nature.
Ryan Chisolm, a 22-year-old, 5-foot-8, 140-pound student, lost consciousness and suffered a broken jaw from the impact. Wells is described in police records as 6-foot-5 and weighing 275 pounds.
Chisolm broke a tooth and several were jammed into his gums, police said. A bystander’s video shows a large man applying a chokehold from behind the student and then slinging his limp body onto the street as a crowd pushes outside a door.
Wells agreed in May to close the bar as the city was beginning proceedings to have it declared a nuisance and shut it down.