The witness heard ’round the world has been placed under arrest.
This week, Courtney Barnes’ colorful account of a police car crash in Mississippi made him an overnight celebrity. Thursday, he was arrested on allegations of shoplifting and charged with contempt of court.
Details about the shoplifting allegations are scarce, police officials say Barnes matches surveillance video released by Chane, the owner of Swell-O-Phonic in Fondren.
Watch a full report on the viral witness’s arrest below:
“We want to stay away from the negative attention,” Chane said. “Courtney has stolen from our store and made our customers and staff uncomfortable. We just want him to stay out of our store. I hope the story gets turned back to the injured officer who deserves the attention.”
Furthermore, Barnes’ account of the scene of the crash where the officer was injured is possibly not factual and does not mesh with other accounts given at the scene.
“When the officer wreck happened, we made a call to refrain from using that man’s description at the scene,” said WAPT News Director Ben Hart. “According to police reports and other witnesses, it was a totally different account of what happened.”
Barnes has since come out denying that his information was false and that he had shoplifted.
“Now, we all know that it’s not accurate information,” Barnes said. “I am personally taking care of certain information, but that is not accurate. And for those out there that are trying to stomp over my success, I pray for you and I hope that I can one day celebrate with you.”