A Man Was Freed From Jail After Outtakes From Which TV Show Provided Him With An Airtight Alibi?
Answer: Curb Your Enthusiasm
California resident Juan Catalan is either the unluckiest or luckiest man alive depending on how you look at his story. In the spring of 2003, Catalan was arrested for the alleged murder of a teenage girl. He insisted he was at a Dodgers game with his daughter, he had ticket stubs from the game, and family corroborated that he had gone to the game that day. Despite that, an eye witness insisted that it was Catalan who had committed the murder and that evidence superseded the evidence provided by his defense team. So far, clearly he’s not such a lucky guy.
While Catalan was held in jail awaiting trial, his defense attorney pored over all the video footage he could find from the stadium. Despite evidence from the stadium cameras that the seat described by Catalan’s ticket stub was occupied during the game, the resolution of the stadium camera and the distance to the seat prevented positive identification. His lawyer heard that the sitcom Curb Your Enthusiasm was filming in Dodger Stadium the day his client was at the game, though, and he contacted HBO for all the video they’d shot that day.
Although Catalan wasn’t lucky enough to get into the official episode, he was lucky enough to be found sitting, very clearly, with his daughter in one of the outtake reels. The time stamp on the HBO video clearly showed he was at the stadium very close to the time of the murder and that it was physically impossible for him to have left and committed the crime. After nearly six months in jail awaiting trial, Catalan was freed on account of the extremely good fortune of appearing as an informal extra in the background of a sitcom show.
Image courtesy of HBO.