ROBERTSON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – A case of stolen identity landed an innocent man in the Robertson County Jail.
It began in December of 2020. That’s when according to an arrest affidavit, Springfield police responded to the Regions Bank on Tom Austin Highway where a bank employee said a man, identified as Antywinton Henderson, was attempting to cash a check not made out to him. The clerk told investigators she contacted the owner of the check by phone and he said he did not write Henderson a check.
Henderson told police he did some work for that person.
However, police didn’t buy that story and locked Henderson up for trying to pass a $1,650 check. He is charged with forgery and theft.
When he didn’t appear for court, the agency that posted his $10,000 bond went after him.
Rick Wetherington runs Tennessee Quick Cash A Around the Clock Bail Bonds, the agency that wrote the bond on Henderson.
“He missed court on a $10,000 bond. I got my recovery team, from Clarksville and they went out and contacted Mr. Henderson. After seeing the mug shot they said, this is the wrong guy. This is the wrong guy! The guy says, ‘I’m not him.’ And they were not going to bring him in. They didn’t cuff him. They didn’t shackle him. Mr. Henderson said, ‘I want to go and get this cleared up.’ He didn’t have to go. He wanted to do the right thing and clear his name.”
Henderson went with bonding agents to the jail.
According to Wetherington, despite the strong belief by bonding agents that the man in their company was not the same man responsible for the forgery at the Springfield bank in December of 2020, jail officials took the 53-year-old Henderson into custody.
Henderson spent the next 12 hours locked up in the Robertson County Jail, charged with a crime that he did not commit.
According to Captain Charles Clark with the Robertson County Sheriff’s Office, “A warrant was issued from court on failure to appear for Antywinton Henderson. He was brought in by bondsmen to the detention facility. All of his identifiers matched the identifiers on the warrant so he was booked in on that charge. It was at that time law enforcement and courts were notified of a possible identity theft situation which is currently being investigated by the Springfield Police Department.”
As News 2 began investigating, Springfield police also began re-examining the case, telling News 2 the man they arrested may have also stolen Henderson’s identity.
According to Springfield Police Chief Jason Head, the man his officers arrested in December who fraudulently showed identification claiming to be Henderson was really 38-year-old Jason Bernard Johns.
According to investigators, when Johns allegedly stole Henderson’s identity, it created the incarceration confusion that landed an innocent man behind bars for 12 hours.
News 2 has learned that Jason Bernard Johns is back behind bars.
Sumner County Jailers told News 2 he was busted this past May for theft, forgery and evading arrest; he is also facing failure to appear charges in Davidson County.
When asked what he would say to the alleged forger and identity thief, Wetherington said, “You made a big mistake by taking someone’s identity and messing a man’s life up. Shame on you buddy!”
If you have any information or have had negative contact with Jason Bernard Johns, you are urged to contact investigators at the Springfield Police Department.