Local man upset after misunderstanding results in warrant for his arrest

Gary Conley
Gary Conley

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Friday September 28 began as a regular pick up from an after school program at Inspire Charter Academy for Gary Conley.

"She asked for his first and last name when she walked in."

Conley went in Inspire Charter School with a family relative to pick up the grandson of Conley's cousin from a program run by the Boys and Girls Club of Baton Rouge.

"The supervisor in charge took my picture and ID and looked for me to sign and saw I wasn't on pick up list," added Conley.

Conley and the woman he was with later left without the child but the supervisor then gave Conley's photo to the mother of another child with the same first name. That's when she contacted police fearing for the safety of her child. Baton Rouge Police issued a warrant for Conley's arrest. The U.S. Marshall's Office got involved as well and actually tracked down Conley's sister in Ponchatoula and searched her home.

"I was on this national list or amber list for a whole week and still didn't know and I went back to school. Can you imagine what would have happened to me if they would have caught me at school?" said Conley.

With the help of Conley's cousin the mix up was straightened out and police issued a recall of the warrant saying a staff member called the wrong child to the office and that the victim and the family member of the accused shared the same first name but not last name.

Conley says he has no problem with protocol and understands that because he was not on the approved list. The supervisor turned him away but he adds it's what happened after he left the parking lot that turned two worlds upside down.

"You hurt two people's lives, you had a mother thinking someone was trying to take her child and have a whole neighborhood riled up about someone trying to be a kidnapper or something and hurt someone's life," said Conley.

The president of the Boys and Girls Club Pat Van Burkleo was not available for an interview on camera but said he stands by the actions taken by the supervisor on duty saying she followed proper procedure.

That however, is not enough for Conley, who contacted Van Burkleo by phone earlier this week.

"Somebody could have called and said Mr. Conley we are sorry for this mix up. Is there anything we can do for you to correct this situation?"

Instead Conley says he is still living on edge believing he needed to tell his side of the story.

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