Man was sentenced to a 13-year prison sentence but cops forgot to take him to jail
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A convicted criminal found himself living the dream when he was sentenced to 13 years behind bars but was never actually taken to jail.
If you're going to be hit with a prison sentence, this is definitely the best case scenario. All of the crime, none of the time - not that I'm condoning crime, and in the majority of cases, you will have to do the time.
The case of Cornealious Anderson was definitely an anomaly, though, and began after the Missouri man was convicted and sentenced to 13 years in prison for the 1999 armed robbery of a Burger King manager while he was making a bank deposit.
Anderson posted bail and appealed his sentence, all the while waiting to be taken to prison. His appeals got denied, but as time went on, no one ever came to lock him up.
Having somehow, apparently, got away with it, Anderson joined a church, started a small business, got married and became a father of four. He was a youth football coach and generally lived an upstanding life, without ever making any effort to conceal his identity.
In the meantime, Anderson's original lawyer and almost everyone else involved in the case had assumed the robber had gone to prison.
Eventually, however, the Missouri Department of Corrections discovered that a clerical error meant Anderson had never actually gone to prison in the first place.
Anderson had spent what sounds like a happy 13 years - the length of his sentence - out of jail, but in 2013 a SWAT team came to his home and arrested him.
Recalling the moment to Jessica Lussenhop, as told on NPR's This American Life, Anderson said:
"I was sleeping. I was awoken. I was about 6 o'clock in the morning, woken by knocking at the door. And it was unusual knocking. It was the consistent knocking-- you know, the hard knocking.
"So I knew something-- what is going on? So I just stood at the top of the stairs for a moment. And finally I said, who is it? I'm in my boxers. And they said, marshals. Open it up or it's coming down. Opened up the door.
"As soon as I opened up the door, it was a small army. I mean, it was about eight of them. They had the shields. They had the helmets. They had the AR-15 style machine-looking guns. And they had the street blocked off. And I said, hey man, you got the wrong person. And he just looked at me. He said, no, you're the right person."
Anderson was taken to prison but after nine months his request for release was granted, with Judge Terry Lynn Brown saying his life over the previous 13 years had led him to believe he was a 'changed man'.