The wrong ‘Robert Jones.’ Man calls WBTV for help after DMV erroneously suspends his license

WBTV Investigates: Agency restores license hours after WBTV inquiry
Robert E. Jones, Jr., of Charlotte, had his driver's license wrongfully suspended by the N.C. DMV.
Published: Jun. 20, 2022 at 5:45 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - A Charlotte-area man called WBTV for help after his license was suspended by the N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles in a case of mistaken identity.

Robert E. Jones, Jr. got a letter from the DMV in March saying his license had been suspended because he failed to show up for court to handle a traffic citation issued in Johnston County.

The problem? Jones said he had never been to Johnston County -- nearly three hours from Charlotte, just east of Raleigh -- and he’d not gotten a traffic citation from the N.C. State Highway Patrol.

WBTV pulled court records for the citation issued to Robert E. Jones, Jr. in Johnston County. The citation number matched the one printed on the letter Jones got in March.

Court records show the citation was issued to a Robert E. Jones, Jr. who lives in Virginia and has a different birthday from the Jones who called us.

“I have a very common name so I get this sometimes, you know, my name gets confused no problem,” Jones told us in his Charlotte home.

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He tried calling the DMV but was told he’d have to drive to Johnston County to have the issue corrected. He called Johnston County’s courthouse only to be told that the DMV would have to correct the issue.

Jones said he visited two DMV offices in person but that was not help, either.

“I thought maybe if I got off the phone, I go in person and they saw me, they saw my physical license and connect the citation numbers but no, we won’t do it,” he said.

After months of frustration, Jones called WBTV to see if we could resolve the issue.

Once we pulled the court records and verified that the DMV had, in fact, taken action against the wrong Robert E. Jones, Jr., we reached out to the DMV with the information we’d collected.

A spokesman responded quickly to confirm the mistake and said it would be corrected.

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Marty Homan, a DMV spokesman, issue the following statement:

“Regrettably, a mistake was made in the electronic reporting of the conviction from the court to DMV and the suspension was erroneously placed on the wrong Robert E. Jones Jr.’s record. As a result, our system automatically generated the notice sent on March 25, 2022. Though this is an extremely rare occurrence, the DMV is adopting measures to prevent this from happening in the future. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.”

Jones is just pleased to have the issue resolved and his license back in good standing.

“I’m really grateful to you guys,” Jones said.

“It’s really, you know, exciting that I got my license back but it’s really frustrating that I couldn’t resolve this myself in the jurisdiction where I live.”

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