CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – An Illinois man has been arrested for allegedly destroying the front door of a bar and fleeing from authorities in Charleston.
According to a criminal complaint, Charles Engene Oberlin, 27, of Illinois, is charged with destruction of property and fleeing.
Police say they were called to Bar 101 early Sept. 20, 2022, for a report of destruction of property. A Charleston Police patrolman says before they arrived on scene, they received a video of a man walking into the bar and kicking out the glass of the front door. The officer described the suspect in the video as a “white male with a beard and multiple tattoos carrying a black shirt dressed in blue jeans and cowboy boots.”
The criminal complaint states the officer searched the area for the suspect, but was unable to locate him at that time.
According to the complaint, the officer then went to the scene and spoke with a Bar 101 employee as well as a bouncer from another bar who said the man had been kicked out of that establishment for an altercation just before the incident at Bar 101 happened. Officers say no one at either business knew any information about who the suspect was.
Officers say while they were searching the area, one officer found a man who matched the description in the area of Lee St. and Reynolds St. The complaint states as an officer got out of their vehicle to speak to the man, he fled leading the officer on a foot pursuit across Washington St. and behind the Charleston Arbors. The man, later identified as Oberlin, then jumped into the Elk River, attempting to swim toward the Women’s and Children’s Hospital.
According to the complaint, the man would allegedly not come out of the water and then allegedly claimed he was unable to get out. A Charleston Fire Department boat arrived on scene to pull the man from the river, and he was then taken into custody.