FDPD officer pleads not guilty

A Fort Dodge police officer accused of assaulting his wife has pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Jody Chansler, 41, of Fort Dodge, made the plea via his attorney, Derek Johnson, Wednesday morning in Webster County Magistrate Court.

Magistrate William Habhab scheduled Chansler’s trial for Sept. 4.

In addition to scheduling Chansler’s trial, Habhab also allowed him to be released on his own recognizance and issued a no-contact order between Chansler and his wife. Habhab also ordered that Chansler surrender all of his guns, including any he might use as a police officer, to the Webster County Sheriff’s Department.

Johnson informed Habhab that he had already spoken to Sheriff Jim Stubbs about that matter, and that Chansler would turn in his guns as soon as he was released.

A 12-year veteran of the Fort Dodge Police Department, Chansler was placed on paid administrative leave after the allegation was reported. He is also the subject of an internal investigation being conducted by the Fort Dodge Police Department.

Chief Tim Carmody said Chansler’s wife came to the Webster County Law Enforcement Center at 2:40 a.m. Tuesday to report the assault.

The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation was called to conduct the investigation due to a conflict of interest.

Chansler was charged with domestic abuse/assault on Tuesday. His wife was taken to Trinity Regional Medical Center and released after being treated for minor injuries.

The case will not be prosecuted by the Webster County attorney’s office, also due to a conflict of interest, according to Webster County Attorney Cori Kuhn Coleman. Instead, Coleman said Chansler’s case will be handled by “special counsel from another county attorney’s office,” although it hadn’t been determined who that attorney would be Wednesday.