Wesley Lowery and Ryan Reilly were never formally arrested in Ferguson, Mo. last summer.
That’s because documents were never properly filed. No mugshots. Fingerprints. Technically they were never even charged. And they were released before cops could even write down their names.
But thankfully, for the sake of their blossoming careers, the WaPo and HuffPost reporters were detained in a jail cell at the Ferguson PD. As was widely reported at the time, Wes got roughed up in a McDonald’s when a cop shoved him into a soda machine. Reilly reportedly got his head shoved against glass. Neither was taken to the hospital with any injury.
But now there’s a shot these wild rascals could spend real time in jail.
HuffPost media reporter Michael Calderone reported Tuesday that St. Louis County prosecutors still have time to bring trespassing charges against Lowery and Reilly — and you can bet your asses their fingers are crossed that it happens. There are open investigations on the matter.
The cutoff date is August 13.
Lowery obviously whined like a child over the prospect of charges being brought against him and his BFF Reilly. “The idea that the prosecutor’s office would consider bringing formal charges in this incident is ludicrous,” he told HuffPost by email.
Reilly sounded equally resolute on the matter. Even downright Zen, saying he has the support of his newsroom — which really won’t help him if he spends a year in the slammer wearing striped outfits, eating slop and pumping iron alongside Wesley in the prison courtyard.
“I have the backing of my newsroom and have absolutely no worries about facing any charges related to this incident in court,” he told his own workplace for the story.
On the matter of their so-called “arrest,” Calderone links to a story by HuffPost just announcing their “arrest.”
When I recently asked Reilly on Twitter if he was arrested in Ferguson, he replied, “It’s complicated.” He did — to his credit — offer The Mirror a more involved, thoughtful response about it by email.
For the record, Reilly still describes what happened to him as “arrested.”
“I wasn’t kidding when I said the situation is complicated, but I’ll try to clarify as much as I can,” he wrote The Mirror. “I was arrested by a St. Louis County Police officer, but was taken with Wesley to the Ferguson Police Department. Here’s a video I shot as we were being released from jail in Ferguson.
“While former Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson, who ordered our release from jail, later apologized to me, the current interim Ferguson chief, Al Eickhoff, falsely claimed the next day that we were released at the scene.
“That’s probably where some of the confusion comes up. On paper, we weren’t booked in Ferguson jail. So the city of Ferguson has no records on us, because we ‘were not booked in our jail or charged by our department.’ They probably should have booked us before putting us in the cell. When they asked who was media, we said we were, and they opened up our cell door. No mugshots. They released us without even taking our names. (But that doesn’t mean we never spent any time in a Ferguson jail cell: my dad has the $9.99 collect call charge to prove it.)
“I think the best way to phrase it would be to say that we were taken into custody, and transported to Ferguson jail cell, but released before we were booked.”
Reilly’s hometown New Jersey newspaper, the Burlington County Times, wrote up the incident. Reilly was “arrested” in the headline but “detained” in the body of the story.
Note to readers: Thank God Reilly’s father saved that collect call charge from his hardened criminal of a son.