A man convicted over a robbery 15 years ago has been waiting ever since to serve his jail term.
The New York Daily News reports that Missouri man Cornealious 'Mike' Anderson helped rob a Burger King employee in 1999 and was ordered to serve 13 years behind bars. But no one came for him and he went on with his life in St Louis.
Mr Anderson told the Daily News that after posting bail he waited for word on when he should surrender himself to the Missouri penal system.
The father of four, owns his home, pays his taxes and volunteers at his family's church, says he just "got on with his life" while he waited.
Mr Anderson got married, fathered four children, coached his son's football team, joined a church and started small businesses of his own, including a contractor service. He never left the St. Louis area, the Daily News says.
All of a sudden last year penal officials realised their mistake and a SWAT team descended on the family home.
This week, Mr Anderson is still waiting. This time for a ruling from the Attorney General's office on whether he must serve the original sentence.
"I'm hoping that there is a way for them to save face while still allowing him to stay free," Mr Anderson's lawyer Patrick Michael Megaro said.
Mr Megaro told the Daily News that some kind of clerical error resulted in his client remaining free.
"He's no legal expert," Mr Megaro told the Daily News. "He relied on his lawyer who has since retired and my predecessor thought Anderson was in prison.
"This man is not a fugitive. He didn't try to hide."
Under the prison term he never served, Mr Anderson was supposed to be released last year.
As the paperwork for his release was being prepared, prison authorities realised Anderson had never been locked up.
According to the New York Daily News, an online petition at change.org has more than 14,000 signatures calling for Mr Anderson's freedom.