Wendel Clark

Wendel Clark

Wendel Clark

Homicide

Wendel Clark
30 YOA
10 block of Fourth Avenue Northwest
Fort Dodge, Iowa
Webster County
October 7, 2015

 
Wendel Clark, 30, of Fort Dodge, Iowa, died Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2015, of two gunshot wounds after being shot in the driver’s seat of his car about a block from his home.

The state medical examiner’s office ruled his death a homicide.

The following stories and reports detail the information about this unsolved murder.


Clark’s death is ruled a homicide

Oct. 10, 2015 | The Fort Dodge Messenger

The death of Wendel Clark has been ruled a homicide by the state medical examiner’s office.

Clark, 30, of Fort Dodge, died Wednesday of two gunshot wounds, according to a statement from the office.

To help solve the case, Webster County Crime Stoppers announced Friday morning that it is offering a $2,500 reward for information leading to the arrest of the person who shot and killed Clark.

Fort Dodge police found Clark unconscious in the driver’s seat of his car Wednesday morning in the 10 block of Fourth Avenue Northwest.

Someone called the Fort Dodge Police Department to report the car in their backyard, according to Police Chief Kevin Doty.

Rescuers with the Fort Dodge Fire Department and Trinity Regional Medical Center treated Clark at the scene before transporting him to the hospital.

Clark was pronounced dead after he arrived at the hospital.

An autopsy was performed Thursday.

Also on Thursday, Charles Clayton, executive director of Athletics For Education and Success, reflected on the time he spent with Clark, who was his cousin.

“He had a smile that lit up the room. He wasn’t a negative-type person or anything like that.”

Clayton coached Clark in basketball when he was younger. It led to some of Clayton’s fondest memories of his cousin.

“Just being able to have the pleasure of coaching him,” he said. “He wanted to be a big basketball star like his brother, Thomas Clark. He wanted to be better than him.”

Thomas Clark, Clayton said, was a popular basketball player in Fort Dodge.

As Wendel Clark got older, Clayton said they would still see each other.

“From time to time, as an adult, he’d reach out,” he said, “and we’d do lunch if he had something on his mind or if he needed some advice.”

Since Clark’s death, Clayton said he’s been doing a lot of self-reflection.

He wants to put a stop to the violence in Fort Dodge.

“I’m searching for ways my organization, AFES, can do more to stop the shootings and the senselessness,” he said. “I’ve done a lot of self-reflection on what we can do.”

Clark also had a family.

“He’s got some young children,” Clayton said. “Hopefully, people will step up and make sure those children do remember their father and their mom gets the support she needs.”

“He will be missed by friends and family,” he added.

Before Clark was found Wednesday, officers had taken a report of shots fired in the same area. However, they were unable to figure out exactly what happened at that time.

In addition to the award posted in Clark’s case, an anonymous donor offered to match the $2,500 if another Webster County homicide is solved as well.

On Sept. 29, Roger Brown, 55, was found dead of a gunshot wound in his trailer in Dayton.

Webster County Sheriff Jim Stubbs said Brown’s body was discovered by two women after Brown failed to show up to an appointment with them.

That crime remains under investigation by the Webster County Sheriff’s Department and Dayton Police Department.

The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation is assisting in both homicides.

Anyone with information on Clark’s case is asked to call the Fort Dodge Police Department at 573-1426.

Information on Brown’s case can be passed along by calling the Webster County Sheriff’s Department at 573-1410.

Tips in both cases can also be placed by calling Webster County Crime Stoppers at 573-1444, as well as online by visiting wccrimestoppers.com or by texting “LEC” and the tip to 274637.

Copyright 2015 The Messenger. All right reserved.


Parents plead to public after son shot, killed

Oct. 12, 2015 | by Laura Terrell, KCCI.com

FORT DODGE, Iowa — Almost a week after a Fort Dodge man was found in his car with a gunshot wound, police say that tracking down his killer could come down to the public’s help.

Wendel Clark

Wendel Clark (Courtesy KCCI.com)

Watch video

Police said 30-year-old Wendel Clark was shot to death while sitting in the driver seat of his car about 7 a.m. Wednesday. He was found unconscious in his car. He was taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Police said Wendel’s car rolled into a fence about a block from his home after he was shot.

His family is joining authorities in the plea for information.

“Whoever did it, I want them to come to justice,” Wendel’s father, Tommy Clark, said. “Somebody knows something out there, and I think they’re scared to talk.

Police are still piecing together a puzzle that seemingly has no motive.

“We’ll do everything we can to protect people that want to come forward with information that will help solve this murder,” said Fort Dodge Police Chief Kevin Doty.

Wendel Clark’s family said he didn’t have any enemies.

“He was a good kid. He wasn’t fighting, always smiling,” Tommy Clark said.

“Please just come forward. You don’t have to leave a name. Just come forward,” Wendel’s mother, Katherine Clark, said.

Webster County Crime Stoppers is offering a reward of $2,500 for any information leading to an arrest.

Anyone with information on the case is asked to call 515-573-1426 or leave information through Crime Stoppers anonymously by calling 515-573-1444 (STOP), online at www.wccrimestoppers.com or by texting “LEC” and the tip to CRIMES (274637).

Copyright 2015 KCCI.com. All rights reserved.


One year since Clark’s homicide

Oct. 7, 2016 | The Messenger

It’s been a year since Wendel Clark was murdered.

The crime remains unsolved.

Clark, of Fort Dodge, was 30 when he died of two gunshot wounds.

Fort Dodge police found him in the driver’s seat of his car on the morning of Oct. 7, 2015, in the 10 block of Fourth Avenue Northwest.

At 6:51 that morning, police got a call about gunshots being fired in that neighborhood.

Fort Dodge Police Chief Kevin Doty said officers investigated, but weren’t initially able to figure out what happened.

Eventually, though, they found a car parked “unusually” in a wooded area, he said.

Clark was unconscious in the driver’s seat. He was pronounced dead at UnityPoint Health – Trinity Regional Medical Center.

Webster County Crime Stoppers offered a $2,500 reward for information leading to the arrest of the person who shot and killed him.

It was a cold ending for a man his cousin said was a good-hearted person who would give you the shirt off his back.

Charles Clayton, executive director of Athletics For Education and Success, remembered his cousin this way: “He had a smile that lit up the room.”

He added, “He’s got some young children. Hopefully, people will step up and make sure those children do remember their father and their mom gets the support she needs.”

A year ago, after it was confirmed by the Iowa medical examiner’s office that Clark’s death was a homicide, Doty made this public request: “At this time, we are strongly urging anyone with information about this incident to please come forward and help us bring closure to this investigation.”

The request still stands.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Fort Dodge Police Department at 573-1426 or Webster County Crime Stoppers at 573-1444. Tips can also be sent anonymously online at wccrimestoppers.com or by texting “LEC” and the tip to 274637.

Copyright 2016 The Messenger. All rights reserved.


About Wendel Clark (from obituary)

Wendel Clark, 30, of Fort Dodge passed away Wednesday October 7, 2015 at Trinity Regional Medical Center.

Funeral services will be 11:00 a.m. Wednesday at Laufersweiler-Sievers Funeral Home. Burial will be in North Lawn Cemetery. A visitation will be 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. Tuesday at the funeral home.

Wendel Clark gravestoneCourtesy photo laed at findagrave.com
Wendel Clark is buried at North Lawn Cemetery in Fort Dodge, Iowa.

Wendel was born January 28, 1985, the son of Thomas and Katherine (Bender) Clark, in Fort Dodge. Wendel attended the Fort Dodge Community School District and graduated from Fort Dodge Senior High School in 2003.

Wendel had a passion for sports, setting several records in basketball, football, and track, He loved being with family and surrounded by friends. But most of all, he loved to make others laugh, put a smile on their face, or simply lend an ear to a friend in need.

Wendel leaves to cherish his memories his parents, Thomas and Katherine Clark of Fort Dodge; grandmother, Louise Bender of Laurel, MS; six daughters, WenTesha, Whitney and Weneasha Clark; Hailey Hoyle-Clark; Chanelle Dubois-Clark; Jaleya Steinkuehler; four sons, Tayven Altman-Clark; Avarian, Armondez and Wendel Clark Jr.; sisters, Jessica and Katrina; Latonya Bender of Laurel, MS; Jonetta, Tommie Jean, Sabrina, Priscilla, Tamaine, and Renita Clark; Tamra and Diondra Knight; Jade Clayton and Courtney Williams; brothers, Edward Brown, Perry Bender, Glendel, Trevor, Sterling, Thomas Lee, Thomas Edward, Mandel, and Creighton Clark; Lamar Gully; Thomas Lamont Davis; Derek Thompson; Jahiem Clayton; a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, aunt, uncles, Glenn (Gayle) Clark and numerous friends.

Wendel is preceded in death by his paternal grandparents, Edward Clark and Mary Alice Trotter-Clark; brothers, Antonio E. Clark; sister, Lariena Clark; uncles, Rufus B. Clark; Johnnie Clark; and Charlie Bender.

Wendel will be deeply missed but surely never forgotten. His million dollar smile touched us all.

Rest in paradise “Boi” for there is no charge and no pain where you are going and no penalties to pay. You have paid your dues and served your master well.

A special salute and thanks to Belinda Smith-Clark, Thelma Hunter, Jennifer Knight and Andrea Naylor-Outlaw.


Information Needed

Anyone with information is asked to call the Fort Dodge Police Department at (712) 573-1426 or Webster County Crime Stoppers at (712) 573-1444. Tips can also be sent anonymously online at wccrimestoppers.com or by texting “LEC” and the tip to 274637.

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