Saved by a Selfie—Need for change in TX False Accusation law
The #MeToo movement gave a voice to women that were abused in their workplace and/or in their past and brought about awareness and change. Unfortunately, there are always going to be those that abuse a good thing. Cristopher Precopia is a victim of a female that did just that. She took advantage of this sweeping call to action and filed false charges against him. Why did the #MeToo movement have anything to do with what happened to him? The Temple, TX police department and Bell County took her story and her “injuries” to be facts and arrested my son without ever speaking to him. Would this have happened two years ago? Due process was not even a blip on their radar. His bail was very high, our lawyer bills even higher all to fight false accusations. Without a doubt, my son was considered guilty and treated as guilty.
If we had not gone somewhere together the night she claimed the incident occurred (I have included links to our story), if we didn’t have the witnesses that signed affidavits as to his whereabouts and if I had not posted the selfie that ultimately saved him…where would he be? Due to the charges being Aggravated Breaking and Entering with Intent (the “boxcutter”) and Assault, he faced up to 99 years in prison. His lawyer said it was luck, I said it was God, but it was also because he WAS COMPLETELY INNOCENT! The judge dismissed all charges, but we are still fighting (and paying) to have his record expunged. We are financially devastated, but he is free. Sadly, he is forever changed—our whole family is. https://www.foxnews.com/us/selfie-saves-texas-man-from-serving-99-years-in-prison?fbclid=IwAR2o7MmM_vjcQvJ8cjOzKcFUwD4Fe1_EK4REM1gyzfiOlxsX3P9nMvln4Q
The female, was arrested for filing false charges--a Class B misdemeanor (the least serious criminal offense in Texas). She had a $2,000 bail set and was out in two hours. He sat in jail for over 24 hours because we had to figure out how to get $15,000 to bond him out, his bail was $150,000. She will suffer almost no consequences for lying to the police—for costing them and us tons of money—and worst of all for almost ruining a young man’s life out of spite. http://www.tdtnews.com/news/article_1246e05c-f841-11e8-9a79-bb94ee613606.html
Absolutely, if someone hurts you, you should tell the police! However, filing false charges against someone needs to have a greater consequence. Perjury is a Class A misdemeanor in Texas, and this should be at least that. Please sign this petition asking our lawmakers to change the classification for this offense from a Class B Misdemeanor to a Felony.