Man to serve sentence after clerical error let him walk for 13 years
Missouri courts were in for a surprise when they tried to release a man from prison ... only to find he'd never been there in the first place.
CBS reporter Dean Reynolds sat down with Cornealious "Mike" Anderson in Charleston, Missouri. Anderson was convicted of robbery and armed criminal action, but after being released on bail, he was never sent back to prison.
"CBS This Morning" said if Anderson hadn't been overlooked due to a clerical error, he'd have gone to prison in 2002 and would have finished his sentence last summer. But courts are saying Anderson still needs to serve his 13-year sentence.
'It's very difficult for me to say we can create an exception.'
If Anderson has to serve the complete sentence, he might not be free until 2026. Anderson says he has reformed his lifestyle since he committed the crime when he was 22.
The Riverfront Times, which broke Anderson's story in 2013, says Anderson now has a family, is considered an ideal father, coaches football and goes to church.
According to Alternet, Anderson's lawyer says: 'This is the type of person you want in the community. This is not the type of person you want to segregate from the community.'
And it's not like Anderson was a particularly difficult person to find. The Riverfront Times says he was possibly the worst fugitive of all time.
'He didn't change his name. He didn't leave town. In fact, his address is just two blocks away from the last one the court system had for him.'
Anderson even had his contracting business registered with the secretary of state. So what does he have to say about the possibility of going to prison?
'I'm a man of faith and I believe my chances are in the hands of God. I have to believe that, I can't believe anything else.'
CBS says even the man Anderson robbed doesn't believe Anderson deserves to serve the sentence. The state attorney general has until next week to respond, and a court could schedule a hearing next month.