FULLERTON (CBSLA.com) — Someone slashed Joshua Eddleman’s tires on Valentine’s Day — and he spent eight months in jail.
When he heard the commotion outside his apartment on Fraternity Row in Fullerton, he and his friends confronted a male student, Reef Bensworth, who then ran, leaving behind his friend, Kirsten Wooley.
Eddleman says he asked her to follow him back to his SUV to explain why she slashed his tires. She told him it was a fraternity prank and apologized.
“She actually said ‘My dad’s a really powerful attorney. I can pay for the damages,’ ” Eddleman says the woman told him.
Eddleman says Wooley asked for a ride to an ATM so she could pay him cash. He and his girlfriend drove her there then offered to take her home to La Habra Heights.
Security photos show Wooley and Eddleman’s girlfriend at the ATM. Eddleman, recovering from surgery, stayed in the car.
Hours later, he and his girlfriend were arrested on suspicion of kidnapping, robbery, burglary and assault.
It turns out the college student and his female friend told police Eddleman beat them both and dragged Wooley by her hair to a trash bin, talked about raping her then left her there.
A friend of hers made a sketchy call to 911:
Caller: My friend he got beat up by a couple of guys and our friend is missing. We don’t know what happened to her. We don’t know where she is.
Dispatcher: What time did this happen?
Caller: 6:30-7 ish.
Dispatcher: OK. And you are just now calling?
Caller: we wanted to go see if she was back over there. It’s complicated.
Eddleman and his girlfriend spent the past eight months in jail on $1 million bail facing life in prison.
Only last month, attorney Frederick Fascenelli found the security tape and got the judge to dismiss the case.
“He’s not just not guilty,” Fascenelli said. “This is an innocent guy. This is a guy who shows the system works.
“To be accused of something as heinous as rape and murder,” Fascenelli said. “I’m not somebody that treads lightly on that subject.”
Eddleman lost his job while in jail, and now would like to see Wooley and Bensworth face misdemeanor charges of filing false police reports and vandalism.