Handcuffs Thwart Wedding
The bride-to-be wore handcuffs.
What police first thought was a straightforward case of an elderly Pinehurst man having wandered off - or been abducted - took a bizarre turn Thursday when he showed up at the magistrate's office in next-door Scotland County ... to get married.
But before anyone could throw rice and shoe-polish the car windows, officers slapped the 'cuffs on the former caregiver.
Carol Ann Ocause, 68, of Pinehurst, was charged with felonious restraint after police say she removed Henry Eugene Aiken, 83, from the Pinehurst Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center on Blake Boulevard on Tuesday.
Police first issued a Silver Alert on Aiken's disappearance. A Silver Alert is a statewide bulletin that tells authorities an elderly person has been reported missing.
Ocause picked Aiken up from Pinehurst Healthcare and Rehabilitation on Monday for a doctor's appointment and didn't return him, said Pinehurst Deputy Police Chief Floyd Thomas. Ocause had been Aiken's caregiver until a week ago.
The Silver Alert was issued on Tuesday after the Moore Department of Social Services reported him missing.
Family members had worried that Ocause might try to leave the area with Aiken. An arrest warrant was put out for Ocause.
The couple turned up Thursday.
"The magistrate recognized them from the Silver Alert and called the authorities," Thomas said.
Scotland County authorities arrested Ocause and transferred her to Pinehurst police. She was taken to the Moore County Detention Center and assigned a $5,000 secured bond.
Aiken was taken to FirstHealth Moore Regional Hospital and will be released back to the custody of the Department of Social Services, Thomas said.
The deputy chief said Aiken was talking and alert and appeared to be in good health.
"We are just glad everything is OK," Thomas said.
Contact Tom Embrey at (910) 693-2484 or email@example.com.
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