Case of mistaken identity leaves South Carolina man in jail for 5 days

South Carolina News

CHESTER COUNTY, S.C. (CNN Newsource) – South Carolina officials arrested the wrong man on property damage and other charges in a case of mistaken identity.

Brenden Eans, engineering graduate from UNC Charlotte, found himself in the Chester County jail charged with damaging property at a storage facility, assaulting a police officer, and leading officers on a chase to get away.

The problem is that police now admit they had the wrong guy.

“I found out my son had been arrested Friday evening when his girlfriend called and said he hadn’t come home,” Eans’ mother, Chanel Sapp-Young, said.

Sapp-Young says police should have known her son could not have been involved because the incident happened Thursday morning. She says if police had checked, they would’ve found out Eans was on the job at a plant in Chester Thursday morning.

Instead, Chester County deputies, armed with warrants from Charlotte, walked into Eans’ plant the next day and led him out in handcuffs. Eans spent the next five days in jail.

“He’s young and he’s never been in any sort of trouble before,” Sapp-Young said.

Finally on Tuesday, police caught their mistake and contacted a prosecutor, who dismissed the charges for insufficient evidence.

“Now this young man has to live with this for the rest his life,” Sapp-Young said. “He has the memory of having to sleep on a jail floor for the rest of his life.”

Eans’ mother says police have apologized for the mistake.

In a statement, the department said, “the circumstances involving the incident are regrettable. The CMPD Internal Affairs Bureau has launched an investigation to ensure the officers involved in the case followed department policy.”

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