Mar 8, 2007

Ever been accused of something you hadn’t done?

I’ve had a reasonably stressful week this week and while it is close to being over, some of the anxiety is still there. On Monday of this week a police officer from the next town over left a voicemail for my wife at home. On the voicemail he explained that on the morning of Feb 28th 2007 my wife had gone into a local mobil station to pump gas. She swiped her card but had stopped to talk to someone and the transaction timed out, she pumped $35 in gas and drove off without paying.

Sounds like an innocent mistake right? Just go pay the $35 you are told you owe and be done with it. That is until you start breaking the facts down and realize it simply wasn’t possible, as you weren’t there on that day.

After contacting the police and the gas station I was a bit taken back. The gas station attendant identified a yellow ford mustang driven by a woman as the person who had done it. When I explained I owned a ford mustang but I hadn’t been in the station on the day in question she pretty much pegged me for it but as the facts came out even further it was more bizarre

On the morning of Feb 28th at 9:15 am a yellow mustang drove off without paying for their gas. Like I said I own a yellow mustang and it isn’t a common color but I’m disturbed at how they arrive at accusing my wife or me of this event. On that morning they never got a plate number for the car all they got was a general description but what bother me is what happened next.

On the morning of Monday March 5th at 5:40am I stopped at that station on my way into work as I had little gas in my tank. The attendant saw a yellow mustang and identified it as the drive off car and called the police turning MY plate number in almost a week after the infraction!!

On the morning of Feb 28th at 9:15 am when I was identified as driving off in my mustang me and my car were sitting 16 miles away at work. I start work at 6 am and it would have taken me over an hour round trip to do what they say. To prove this I turned security tapes from my employers parking lot over to the police showing my car in the lot virtually all day on the 28th… obviously it wasn’t me

The gas station owner is a representative for the state of NH and when I spoke to him I asked if I could come in and view his security tapes to prove it wasn’t me. He agreed but he expected me to take time from my job to do it as he wasn’t taking time from his, While I wanted to get this matter cleared up I didn’t feel it was fair to expect me to lose 3 hours pay because his clerk misidentified me. So I guess the security tapes from my employer are a valuable thing.

When did this country get so messed up that I became guilty before I was ever innocent in this mess? Why was the burden of proof on me to prove my innocence instead of the station owner having to prove guilt? How is it the police can take a plate number 5 days after the initial event?

... It’s been a stressful week for sure … I can’t wait to be over this mess …

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