View Full Version : Have you ever been a vctim of mistaken identity ?

2010-Sep-08, 10:42 PM
Hello all.

After 6 weeks I have just managed to clear my name. The police have dropped charges of "Driving without due care and attention", "Failing to report an accident" and "Leaving the scene of an accident without stopping".

I received a letter from the police nearly 6 weeks ago saying they were considering charging me with these things, but giving no details of what it was about or who reported it, all I knew was the time and date of the incident.

I wrote to the police and was able to prove that at that time (and for almost 2 hours either side of that time) I was sitting in my living room and my car was sitting in my driveway.

As a result the police phoned me today to say that all charges are dropped and they will take no further action because there is no evidence against me.

Also a claim from my insurance company for the same incident has now also been dropped.

If I could not have proved where I was, I now realise that I would have had a hard time with the police and my insurance company.

I still have no idea what the incident was. What if someone had been killed in the incident ?

All I can assume is it is a case of mistaken identity.

At last I can relax.

2010-Sep-08, 10:44 PM
It could be that someone is driving around with false registration plates that match yours. In which case, it may be too early to relax...

2010-Sep-08, 10:49 PM
No, I can relax. The vehicle I had then was totally destroyed in an accident I had on the M1 motorway just 3 weeks ago. I remember posting about how I was lucky to get out alive.

So if they have those plates they don't match the ones on my new car :)

But I seem to be not having much luck with cars recently, so maybe I shouldn't relax too much.

2010-Sep-08, 11:42 PM
I had the Pensylvania State Police phone me at my parents home to tell me I was being investigated for filling up my SUV at a gas station while in PA and then leaving without paying.

Which was odd, since I didn't own an SUV.

Or any other vehicle, for that matter.

Nor had I ever been to the town where the gas station was at. But it took me about three seconds on the phone with the trooper to 'prove' it wasn't me. It was someone with my same first and last name, but with a different middle name. And apparently someone who owned a red SUV. The officer who phoned me apologised profusely when he realized I was the wrong person, though I was just laughing. I told him it wasn't like they kicked in my door and hauled me off in handcuffs (at which point I wouldn't have been laughing.)

When I went to get a job with the city of Columbus, I had my friend's father-in-law arrainge for me to go on a "ride-along" with an officer one night to get an idea for the job. Before I could, they had to run my record. There were 16 people in Columbus with my same first and last name, and of those, 10 of them had outstanding warrents (though mostly for things like unpaid traffic tickets or child support.) And yes, *my* record came back clear.

. . .

Anyway, back to yoru thing RAF -- did the alleged incident happen before or after your accident? If it was after, it's possible someone stole the tags off your wrecked car and was using them.

What's more likely, however, is that someone witnessed an incident and mis-remembered the tag numbers.

2010-Sep-08, 11:45 PM
It was before the accident, so I agree someone must have mis-read the plates. But they also said it was a red car of the same make and model as mine. Very odd.

2010-Sep-09, 02:28 AM
A much more benign example- my father looks (somewhat) like Steven Spielburg, and several times when we've been on Long Island, I've seen people whisper and point or come up for a closer look only to realize he isn't Spielburg and leave embarrassed.

2010-Sep-09, 04:40 AM
I got beat up in high school once for apparantly hitting on some girl I didn't know because someone said "Nick did it". Yeah, wrong Nick.....

2010-Sep-09, 08:55 AM
No, I can relax. The vehicle I had then was totally destroyed in an accident I had on the M1 motorway just 3 weeks ago. I remember posting about how I was lucky to get out alive.

Oh yes, I remember. Maybe the delayed shock caused you to imagine this whole incident :)
I wonder if there could be some connection; maybe the details of your accident and the other one got mixed up somehow?

2010-Sep-09, 09:04 AM
It happens sometimes that people swipe the plates off of junkers. Given that the hit and run had been in a car similar to yours, it sounds like this is a plausible scenario. Possibly the perpetrator of the hit and run had done so because of a prior problem with his/her existing plates.

2010-Sep-09, 09:09 AM
I was once stopped on the street and asked to take part in an identity parade [police lineup]. I was a bit surprised when the witness identified me as the suspect. I think police were too, after a couple of routine questions they let me go.

2010-Sep-09, 04:02 PM
Quite a few years ago, in the town I lived in, the local P.D. knocked on my door at 2 in the morning, and asked me to get dressed and go to the station with them. Not knowing any better, I complied. Once at the station, I was told I was being arrested for buying alcohol for minors, and that if I simply admitted to it, they would fill the paperwork out, and give me a summons to appear, and I would be on my merry way.

My proof of not ever having gone to a liquor store was that I had my twin 8 year old nephews with me all day, as we were babysitting for my sister's anniversary. The officer seemed less than impressed with that information. So I told him he better start doing whatever he had to do to put me in jail, and that I wanted my phonecall.

At that point, he left the room and was gone for maybe an hour. Then he pops back in, all cheery now, and says, "we think we know what happened", and they drive me back home. No harm, no foul. By that time, my neighbor who was a long time member of the local PD, was in my living room, and he said, I called down to tell them they were out of their mind, but they wouldn't listen.

Later I was told, there was a person with a very similar name, and looks, who had done the buying for the teenager party.

Maybe I was very fortunate.

2010-Sep-09, 09:08 PM
This is a benign example too, but it used to bug me when I was younger. I used to be mistaken for one of my sisters quite often because we have similar hair and eyes (people never seemed to notice that we had different hairstyles, dressed differently, etc.), but that was before we grew up and moved to different cities. Still, there are times when I visit my childhood hometown and some random person isn't sure which sister I am.

2010-Sep-10, 01:55 PM
Someone once used my address when they were caught fare dodging on the train somewhere in Yorkshire, if that counts?

2010-Sep-10, 02:21 PM
Someone once used one of my credit cards to order some flowers to be delivered. I thought that was pretty dumb because (if the credit card company could be bothered) it would be easy to track down the person involved. Weirdly, I recognized the address that the flowers were sent to because it was just round the corner from where I lived as a child.

2010-Sep-10, 07:02 PM
My sister had something similar happen to her. She was accused of crashing her car into someone elses up in Scotland. Her insurance company was involved with it and the police, she hadn't been in Scotland nor had a crash, but they were insisting she did. She had to get her car inspected by the "third party's" insurance company, who said there was no damage done to her car. To cut a long story short, and after almost 5 months of this, they discovered it was all a con. RAF_Blakace be aware that there are crooks out there who won't stop at anything to try and get money out of any "target" they have a reg plate number from.

2010-Sep-13, 04:23 PM
There is, apparently, someone else with the exact same name as me, including the middle name. I received a letter in the mail, a few years ago, looking for a long lost family member. I thought it was really odd because they described half my life; my age, my oldest child's name/age, and about when I moved to Fl. It creeped me out but then I thought that they were probably tracking me and not the family member they were looking for.

2010-Sep-13, 04:37 PM
In Albuquerque, three people that I know of have my name (but different middle names). We show up in certain databases all over town including one at Blockbuster video where one of my counterparts ran up many late charges for video rentals. They tried to get me to pay his late charges -- yeah, right!

Another time I ordered take-out food from a restaurant where the same person worked ("Mr. late-charge"). The person taking the order at the front counter thought it was a joke and I spent minutes convincing her I was not their cook in their kitchen. By the time I picked up my food, my counterpart had left his work shift so I didn't get to meet him.

A friend of mine was almost arrested and had to spend hours proving he was not the rapist with an identical first and last name as his name.


The Backroad Astronomer
2010-Sep-13, 05:49 PM
There is a father and son in the area who have the same first and last name as me. For a couple of years they lived on the same road as me and a few times the mail got mixed up and one time at the eye doctor they got us confused. Also my father has the same name as me except for the middle name but him and my mother got divorced when I was young. Every time I sign something something I usually use my middle initials, even when we can hide who you are a still use them.

Even if you knew my name you still won't find the right entry for me, there are a plenty of people with same last and first name as myself. It is kind of like hiding in a crowd.

2010-Sep-13, 06:40 PM
My father made the mistake of leaving a copy of his car registration in a car that he sold. He ended up getting a summons to appear in a town about a hundred miles away for speeding and driving without a license. My parents had to take the day off work and book a room for the night, just for him to stand up in the courtroom long enough for the responsible officer to say, "No, that's not the guy I gave the ticket to."

My company allocates email addresses in the form first initial+last name+number if you're not the first@megacorp.com. I happen to be the original "kparker" and get at least one email a week intended for "kparker23" or whatever. Someone was sloppy entering her email address when ordering from Ticketmaster, and I received a couple of e-tickets to an Allison Krause concert. But my two favorites so far are the ones I get from England. So far I've been invited to a pickup cricket match and to the Royal Ascot Ball.

And I think my primary care physician has another patient with my name. At least they are always asking me my birth date, and I think there was one time they asked me if it was a certain day, and it wasn't.

2010-Sep-13, 11:44 PM
No serious problems. However, I do have a pretty common first and last name so:
1. There was apparently a teacher with the same name at a local high school. I lived just a couple of blocks from the school so kids would look up his name in the phone book, find me, and make prank calls in the middle of the night.
2. When I worked at a smallish company there was another employee with the same first and last name. The gate guard called me up one day to say my wife was there to pick up my paycheck. I wasn't married at the time.... He also lived near me, and I once got an answering machine message from "Joe's Smokehouse" telling me to come pick up my fish!
3. At the large company I recently retired from, there were at one time about twenty of me. And about twice that many if you counted the alternate spellings of my last name. Fortunately they never had the same middle initial, but occasionally a piece of mail would come in without a middle initial and bounce around from person to person in the mail system.

2010-Sep-14, 10:57 AM
There is, apparently, someone else with the exact same name as me, including the middle name. I received a letter in the mail, a few years ago, looking for a long lost family member. I thought it was really odd because they described half my life; my age, my oldest child's name/age, and about when I moved to Fl. It creeped me out but then I thought that they were probably tracking me and not the family member they were looking for.

Just as a guess, isn't it likely that the person was trying to collect information about that other person, but because you have the same name, they came up with records about you by mistake? It sounds like this could easily have been an accident.

2010-Sep-14, 01:57 PM
Sort of {snarky chuckle}. Last year it became apparent some acquaintances (and they'd only been that) had backstabbed me a good one in a social circle I'd left for 1-1/2 years, then returned to. I still have no idea what compelled them, aside from sheer boredom and stupidity; they never took the time to get to know me the first time around. A woman in that group (met her upon my return) is a kook and apparently believed everything she'd heard; as if it were true and indisputable. She continued judging me based on what the backstabbers had said, despite 95% of everyone else liking me and being supportive. But no, that wasn't apparent to her; she kept on and on raising a fuss and finally threw a tantrum on her husband; I left. She's on the road to higher education but methinks needs to take a detour on a good psychiatrist's couch.

The person she and the backstabbers (I figured out quickly who this older couple was, and they did seem sorry -- and hopefully not just because they got found out because Kookella kept going off the deep end) "saw" me as and who I really am are two entirely different people. Everyone else knows it as well.

Seems I had a very tiny taste of what it's like to suffer from mistaken identity and face criminal charges and possible prison time!

Takes all kinds of fruitcakes to make a world I guess. :(