A Texas man was facing a 99-year prison term, but was cleared of any wrongdoing due to a selfie he took 60 miles away with his family.
Cristopher Precopia, 21, was arrested in 2017 and accused of breaking into his ex-girlfriend’s home, attacking her, and carving an “X” into her skin with a box cutter.
A photo with his family saved this man from a life in prison.
The woman claimed the attack unfolded the day before his arrest. Precopia, however, knew he was out of town with his family, and had a selfie to prove it, according to reports this week.
His parents posted $150,000 bail to secure his release from jail, and his mother pointed to a selfie photo she uploaded to Facebook with a timestamp and location, which was used as a piece of evidence for his alibi.
“I had no idea why everything was happening, and I was lost,” he told KVUE on Nov. 12. Meanwhile, according to USA Today, he could remember the last time he saw her, as the two dated in high school years before.
'I had no idea why everything was happening, and I was lost'
The selfie photo showed that he was with his mother, Erin, at an Austin hotel room about 65 miles from the home of the accuser.
“I’m thinking, ‘This is awesome. By the grace of God, she said it happened on the day when I can say totally, 100 percent, where he was at,” Erin Precopia told USA Today.
Sworn affidavits from several people who were there with him that evening were provided to the court. Other photos on Facebook posted at the same time as the claimed assault were also used, the report said.
“Most of the time, we deal with gray matters,” attorney Rick Flores told the paper. “It’s not normally black or white. But this is one of those cases where I could definitely prove he did not commit this offense.”
Flores said that Precopia hadn’t had contact with his ex-girlfriend for years, and he didn’t even know where she lived, according to ABC News.
The accuser has yet to be identified as she hasn’t been charged with a crime. She later told police in Temple that she reported Precopia because they had a bad relationship years earlier. According to KVUE, the woman told police of the box cutter incident, “I could hear the slices being made, and it stung a lot.” When she tried to get away to grab a Taser, “he was gone,” the woman said.
Flores alleged the woman made the whole thing up, adding the box cutter wound appears too clean-cut. “It’s just preposterous to think that somebody with such anger, and then somebody on the other side fighting back, and there’s a struggle, that the wound would look like that,” Flores told ABC News. “It’s just crazy.”
Erin Precopia told ABC the two dated for six weeks when he was 17 and she was 15, and they didn’t break up amicably.
His mother said the arrest has taken its toll on her son. “He’s not the same kid that he was a year and a half ago, which breaks my heart,” she said, ABC reported.
Precopia told KVUE: “I was constantly fearful as to what could happen the next day. I was going to sleep hoping I would wake up.”