Less than 24 hours after Lucky Whitehead was released by the Dallas Cowboys in the wake of his alleged involvement in a June larceny case, Virginia police have cleared him of all charges.
Whitehead was believed to have shoplifted food and drinks from a Manassas, Va. convenience store June 22 and was charged with failing to appear at a July 6 court date.
According to Prince William County police, though, they had the wrong guy.
The man charged on June 22 didn't have any identification at the time of the encounter, but did verbally give identifying information to officers that included a name, date of birth and social security number, which matched Whitehead's full name: Rodney Darnell Whitehead, Jr.
Once officers verified this information with the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles' database, they found a DMV photo on file, which was used as a comparison to the man in custody.
"Officers acted in good faith that, at the time, the man in custody was the same man matching the information provided," read a statement from Prince William County police Tuesday morning.
The police department confirmed Tuesday that Whitehead's identity was falsely given during the initial investigation.
"Since the identifying information provided by the arrestee during the investigation was apparently false, the police department is working with the Prince William County Commonwealth Attorney’s Office to clear Mr. Whitehead from this investigation," police said. The police department regrets the impact these events had on Mr. Whitehead and his family."
Police are still looking for the suspect responsible for the theft.
Despite the revelation that Whitehead wasn't involved, the Cowboys won't consider bringing him back in the immediate future, according to a source within the organization.
Whitehead figured to have his work cut out for him this fall independent of legal troubles. Rookie Ryan Switzer, who the Cowboys took in the fourth round of this year's draft, will likely be auditioning for the snaps Whitehead would have gotten.
Whitehead made headlines last week when he said his pit bull puppy was stolen and held for ransom. He was later reunited with the dog.
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