GREEN COVE SPRINGS, Fla. – An unusual exchange occurred in court Thursday morning as Jacksonville native Stephen Nathaneil "Gatorwolf" Ketcher appeared before a Clay County Judge.
Ketcher appeared before Clay County Court Judge Timothy R. Collins at 7:45 a.m. on charges of being a fugitive from justice. Ketcher is wanted by the Mesa County Sheriff's Office in Colorado for charges of sex assault on a child and turned himself in to the Clay County Sheriff's Office Wednesday at 12:15 p.m., according to Mesa County Sheriff's Office Public Information Officer Heather Benjamin.
As Ketcher's first appearance before Judge Collins wrapped up, Ketcher said, "I'm proud of you judge."
Which caught Collins off guard, "I'm sorry?"
Ketcher replied, "I'm very proud of you Tim, we went to elementary school together."
Which again surprised Collins, "We did?"
Ketcher and Judge Collins both attended Reynolds Lane Elementary School in the Paxon neighborhood in the mid-1960's. Once Collins thought about the connection he replied, "I'll be darned. Thank you."
An usual exchange in Clay County, Fla court. Former pro wrestler accused of sexual assault of a child says hello to judge, a former elementary school classmate. First Coast News
Ketcher is accused of assaulting a pre-teen girl in Colorado numerous times over several months beginning in April 2013, according to the MCSO.
Investigators believed Ketcher was in the Jacksonville area after the 56-year-old former wrestler and wrestling promoter was in the Jacksonville area after he had a photo taken of him in March 2014 at an Orange Park casino, according to the MCSO.
Ketcher's next court appearance is scheduled for May 28 at 9 a.m.