In a bizarre turn of events, police recently accused a Massachusetts man of stealing a boat and then later claiming to share the same name as Peter Pan. This ultimately led to police filing theft charges against the 26-year-old resident of Topsham. The strange incident apparently began when the boat’s owner reported that a theft had occurred at a landing on the Charles River.

Massachusetts State Police were able to find the boat, which had reportedly sped away along the Charles River after the alleged theft. When they caught up to the man, they ordered the man to the stern and proceeded to question him as to his identity. He purportedly told them he was the boat’s owner and that his first name was Peter and his last name was Pan.

In the wake of this unusual occurrence, Massachusetts authorities have leveled several charges against the man. These include breaking and entering a boat, larceny in an amount over $250, furnishing a false name to police and using a boat without the permission of its owner. A judge set bail for the man in the amount of $2,500. However, that bail was revoked because the man was apparently facing other larceny charges that had nothing to do with the boat case.

Still, just because the man is facing two sets of theft charges doesn’t mean that he is automatically guilty of any of the accusations. Each accused individual is guaranteed a presumption of innocence in each successive case. Prosecutors face a high standard of proof in order to obtain a conviction. Since they do not always meet this burden, the American justice system provides accused individuals with the presumption of innocence until and only if proven guilty in a court of law.

Source: Fox News, “Mass. man arrested for boat theft tells cops to call him ‘Peter Pan’,” July 2, 2013