Where is David Richard Stewart Now: We gain insight into the evil side of human nature thanks to the movie “Don’t Pick Up the Phone,” which explores how a hoax caller targeted fast food outlets around the US to insult their young employees. After all, it depicts the determination of detectives to catch the offender and an impersonating police officer’s attempts to have managers strip-search their employees. Since David Richard Stewart was the target of the horrific fraud investigations, which lasted at least 12 years and began in 1992, let’s learn more about him, shall we?
Who is David Stewart?
David was arrested in the summer of 2004. He was a married father of five and worked as a prison guard at the privately run Bay Correctional Facility in Panama City, Florida. He was sent to Bullitt County, Kentucky, before he was officially charged with pretending to be a police officer, soliciting sodomy, and soliciting sexual abuse. That’s because the hoax made people think he was behind the 3.5-hour physical, sexual, and mental attack on 18-year-old McDonald’s worker Louise Ogborn on April 9.
As if this wasn’t bad enough, investigators from over 30 states, including Arizona, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, Ohio, and Utah, started looking into David because of several similar cases. The main reason for this was that the fraud calls to each business were made by a calm, patient, and authoritative-sounding man who said he was an officer. This was a very similar way of doing things. Then, he always said he was looking into a significant theft and gave a very general description of his “suspect” to get managers to strip-search people on his behalf.
Once this first step was done, the real criminal is said to have carefully turned each situation into a full-fledged attack, turning them into kidnappings and rapes from far away. Detectives were also helped by the fact that they were able to track all of the calls back to prepaid AT&T calling cards in Panama City. This helped them narrow down their search. So, they caught David on fuzzy surveillance footage where he seemed to buy the same card used in Louise’s attack as well as two other cards used in similar situations.
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Where is David Richard Stewart Now?
Even though the above footage led to David’s arrest in 2004, he was soon freed on a bail of $100,000 (down from around $500,000) and allowed to return to Florida. But he still faced up to 15 years in prison if he was found guilty of the charges against him. He had to go to court and face the music, which he did a little more than two years later, in the fall of 2006. His trial was said to have taken a week and was full of evidence and testimonies, including one from the victim, Louise Ogborn. We should also say that she was going to therapy to deal with the PTSD and depression caused by the event.
But since there were no recordings or witnesses who could confirm that David was at the pay phone where the calls came from or that they could hear his voice, the evidence against him was only based on what seemed to be true. So, on October 31, 2006, after only an hour and a half of deliberation, the jury found the man from Fountain, Florida, not guilty of all charges. He was acquitted and given his freedom without any conditions.
Some lawyers say David was the mastermind behind the hoax, but it’s important to note that no new charges, related or not, have been brought against his name. Prosecutor Mike Mann once said, “I don’t think the evidence points to anyone but David Stewart.” He also said that the calls seemed to stop when Stewart was arrested in 2004. Still, some news stories say that similar things have happened in the past, one of which occurred as recently as 2009.
From what we can tell about David now, he is a middle-aged man who doesn’t want to be in the spotlight. This is happening so much that it’s hard to tell if he’s still in Florida or if he’s moved somewhere else to start over. So, we can only guess that he is still a family man who wants to put the past behind him as best he can.