A Pennsylvania man claims he suffered memory loss following a head injury during a car wreck. Following the injury he says he has no recollection of the crimes he supposedly committed. Instead, the man says he has “turned his life around” and no longer has criminal tendencies.
The Daily Mail reports that Christian Eshenbaugh was charged with stealing over 2,000 aluminum tire rims from a salvage yard. The rims have an estimated value of over $30,000. However, Eshenbaugh’s lawyer, Stephen Misko, says that his client “can’t recall” the theft as he has suffered memory loss following a head injury during a car crash.
Eshenbaugh suffered traumatic brain injuries when the car he was traveling in smashed into a tree in Pennsylvania in 2013. Eshenbaugh was in the car wreck just a few months after the alleged rim theft spree. The Daily Mail notes that Eshenbaugh spent several weeks in the hospital following the head injury before being transferred out to a rehabilitation facility for recovery. Eshenbaugh’s friend, who was driving the car at the time of the wreck, reportedly died at the scene.
Following the incident, Eshenbaugh’s lawyer says that his client doesn’t remember his drug problems or theft sprees. In fact, his lawyer claims he has “turned his life around 180 degrees.” However, that did not stop the Butler County Court from going through with their sentencing for the crime that the defendant “can’t recall.”
However, it appears that the judge may have taken the memory loss and turn around in Eshenbaugh’s life into account when determining sentencing. According to the Butler Eagle, Eshenbaugh was sentenced to just one year probation for the 2013 theft of about $30,000 worth of aluminum rims, but will also pay an undetermined about of restitution at a later date.
Eshenbaugh’s lawyer noted that though some of his memories are returning, his “penchant for trouble” is not coming back.
“He is just a completely different person.”
Prior to his injury, Eshenbaugh was facing a number of charges for petty crime related to drug use. However, he only pleaded guilty to charges of disorderly conduct.
What do you think about the memory loss claim by Eshenbaugh’s attorney? Do you think the inability to recall the crime was a ploy for a lighter sentence, or do you believe the defendant when he says he cannot recall the theft spree? Do you think the judge went easier on Eshenbaugh due to his memory loss and head trauma?