Authorities in California have confirmed Travis Alexander, the man Jodi Arias is charged with murdering, was the victim of an identity theft that resulted in a mistaken criminal record.
"We were able to confirm via fingerprints that the person in [the police report] is not Travis. It is Dennis Alexander ... [The] booking photo is of Dennis, using Travis' name," Sgt. Lisa McConnell, of the Riverside County Sheriff's Department, told The Huffington Post Tuesday evening.
On Monday, HuffPost reported that court documents in Travis Alexander's name show an arrest and conviction for fighting with a security guard and shoplifting in Riverside, Calif., in 2002. Arias supporters had also obtained copies of the court documents and were posting the information online, in an apparent attempt to show that Alexander was prone to violent outbursts, as Arias alleged in court earlier this month.
Contacted by HuffPost, Dennis Alexander, Travis's brother, did not hesitate to take responsibility for the arrest. He told HuffPost that he committed the crime and falsely identified himself to arresting police officers as Travis Alexander, then later passed himself off in court as his brother.
The sheriff's department took Dennis Alexander's claims seriously and worked diligently Tuesday to determine whether he was telling the truth. After comparing photos of Dennis Alexander to the booking photo for the 2002 arrest, authorities ordered the comparison of fingerprint records from the arrest in question with prints on file from Dennis Alexander's other arrests. The department completed the verification process Tuesday evening.
"[Travis] has never been arrested in Riverside County," Deputy Alberto Martinez, of the Riverside County Sheriff's Department, told HuffPost when he received the results.
McConnell released a copy of the original mug shot and police report Tuesday evening. A spokesperson for Travis Alexander's family told HuffPost they are happy the issue has been resolved.
Travis Alexander was killed on June 4, 2008. His then-ex-girlfriend, Jodi Arias, is being tried for first-degree murder in the case. Prosecutors allege that in a jealous rage, Arias shot Alexander in the head, stabbed him 27 times and cut his throat from ear to ear in his Mesa, Ariz., home. Arias claims the killing was self-defense. She could face the death penalty if convicted.
The outcome of the sheriff's office investigation casts further doubt on Arias's claim that Travis Alexander was as an abusive boyfriend, as her supporters and defense team have portrayed him throughout her trial. To date, no evidence has surfaced to back up those allegations.
Dennis Alexander said the arrest mistakenly attributed to his brother took place in March 2002, at a store in Riverside, Calif. He said he was attempting to leave the store with drugs when he was confronted by a security guard. "I was already on parole and would have went to prison, so I used Travis's name and information," he said.
Dennis Alexander has profusely apologized for the 2002 incident. He said he has since cleaned up his act and regrets the decisions he made back then.
"That was a time in my life when I was addicted to drugs and was a real mess," he said. "It's something that I am ashamed of. I have been clean for almost 10 years and it's something Travis forgave me for a long time ago."READ THE NEWLY RELEASED COURT DOCUMENTS: Newly Released Alexander Police Report -