Former Teen Mom 2 star David Eason has been officially charged with two crimes stemming from the YouTube video he uploaded last week in which he attached a winch to another person’s truck and forcibly towed it backwards over a parking dispute.
Reporter Ben Smart, the self-appointed head of WECT’s inevitable Jenelle Division, broke the news on Twitter earlier today. “CRIMINAL CHARGES: David Eason has been charged with two misdemeanors for forcefully pulling a man’s truck – all caught on video,” Ben wrote. “The charges are: injuring or tampering with vehicle, and injury to personal property greater than $200, Wilmington police confirm.”
He added that David’s court date is scheduled for January 28.
In addition, Ben sayid that both offenses are Class 2 Misdemeanors, which carry a maximum sentence of 60 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.
I did some research, and, according to the North Carolina sentencing guidelines, a Class 2 Misdemeanor only has a max sentence of 60 days if the defendant has five or more prior convictions. David certainly has an extensive criminal history, but I do not know if he qualifies for this level of sentencing. (A little more on that in a minute.)
However, Ben also states that David has been charged with “injury to personal property greater than $200,” which looks to be a Class 1 Misdemeanor. Here is the statute:
§ 14-160. Willful and wanton injury to personal property; punishments.
(a) If any person shall wantonly and willfully injure the personal property of another he shall be guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor.
(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a), if any person shall wantonly and willfully injure the personal property of another, causing damage in an amount in excess of two hundred dollars ($200.00), he shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.
(c) This section applies to injuries to personal property without regard to whether the property is destroyed or not.
A Class 1 Misdemeanor carries a maximum sentence of 120 days in jail if the defendant has five or more prior conviction, and a maximum of 45 days if the defendant has less than five prior convictions.
The Wilmington Police Department also shared an update on Twitter in response to numerous tweets inquiring about the status of the case. “What is the latest update on your Golden Boy David Eason and his wife @PBandJenelley_1, breaking the law multiple times and your department doing nothing???” one Twitter user asked. Wilmington PD’s response:
Hi Amber! Eason was served with a criminal summons for tampering with a vehicle and causing injury to personal property. The next step is for Eason to appear in court. And, just for clarification, this is the first instance of Eason breaking the law within our jurisdiction.
I have done extensive research into David’s criminal history, and I had my doubts about WPD’s claim that this was the first time they had any record of him committing a crime within their jurisdiction. I did a quick search and came up with no fewer than five different instances that qualified as an “arrest” according to New Hanover County records:
BUT, it doesn’t appear as though any of these arrests occurred within the jurisdiction of the Wilmington Police Department. They instead fell within the jurisdiction of the New Hanover County Police Department. As far as the sentencing guidelines, I assume the “prior convictions” caveat is not restricted to the jurisdiction of the current offense.
There has been no reaction from either David or Jenelle to the news about the criminal charges being filed. They continue to enjoy Christmas on The Land — including David spending some quality time with his new best friend — a dead crow that he killed:
Jenelle had previously stated that she had contacted a lawyer and implied that the towing victim, Terry Hill, had been coerced into pressing charges, thereby making the filing “against the law.”
Stay tuned, as we will continue to update on #towgate until the matter is resolved.