Wrong fugitive: Man arrested in Mexico is not Polk County DUI suspect wanted for 14 years, FHP says

Polk County

TAMPA (WFLA) – The Florida Highway Patrol announced Friday that the man who was captured in Mexico earlier this week and believed to be a Polk County man who had been on the run for 14 years is actually a completely different fugitive.

The FHP announced the arrest of a man who they believed was Brian Dale Andrews on Wednesday. According to troopers, the man was arrested and returned to the United States after he had identified himself to Mexican authorities as Andrews, who has been wanted in Polk County for 14 years in connection with a deadly DUI crash.

But on Friday, troopers said the United States Marshal’s Service confirmed that the man they had in custody was, in fact, another fugitive named Ernest McBride. McBride has warrants out from Arkansas and Missouri.

Despite similar physical characteristics, troopers said fingerprint comparisons proved the man they had taken into custody was McBride, not Andrews.

Andrews was 29 years old at the time of the crash that claimed the lives of Danny and Patricia McCown. Authorities said he had a suspended license and was found to have a BAC of 0.315, nearly four times the legal limit.

According to troopers, Andrews went on the run after he was released from the Polk County Jail, before two DUI manslaughter charges were filed against him.

FHP Troopers continue to search for Andrews. Anyone with information on his whereabouts are encouraged to contact the FHP at 813-558-1800, local law enforcement or Crime Stoppers.

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