In 2005, Jameel McGee, 35, was arrested and charged with dealing crack cocaine and eventually served four years for the offense.
The only problem was McGee who lives in Benton Harbor, Michigan, did not have any drugs on him, but the arresting officer Andrews Collins, 33, falsified the police report accusing McGee.
Collins knew the drugs belonged to another person in the car that McGee had been riding in. But no one else knew and the courts sentenced McGee to ten years in prison for a trafficking crime he didn’t commit.
Though McGee’s insistence he was innocent is a common enough claim for those arrested for drugs, in this case he was eventually proven right.
In an AP story, Collins admitted he was a dirty cop. It began when he worked narcotics with the police department. It started small but escalated to the point he was stealing drugs and even money and planting drugs on people and falsifying reports to get a quick arrest.
Meanwhile as he sat in prison, God began working on McGee — an angry man sitting in a cell because of a false accusation. During this time, he turned to the Bible and as he read the Scripture he realized he needed to let it go.
McGee told AP, “As I was reading it, all these thoughts started coming in my head — to just let it go. Move on. Be something productive while you are here.”
And when McGee’s brother was shot, he realized that prison was probably been the best place for him, because he might have run with the same crowd.
Meanwhile outside the prison walls, the police were closing in on a “dirty” cop. After they found stolen, illegal drugs hidden at his desk, Collins pleaded guilty to corruption on January 29, 2009. The courts released McGee six days later on February 4, 2009.
The courts sentenced Collins to a year and a half in prison after he worked with the FBI to overturn 50 cases that also involved another corrupt police officer in the department.
But Collins told AP a similar story. Shortly after the police found the illegal drug cache at his desk in early 2008, Collins turned to Jesus.
He told his wife she needed to contact a local pastor, and because Rev. Brian Rumor of New Life Baptist Church in nearby St. Joseph had once been a police officer, a unique bond developed between Collins and Rumor.
Collins trusted him and eventually confessed everything he had done to the pastor. Collins repented, believed on Jesus, and took full responsibility for what he had done.
After his release, Collins, who is today working to become a pastor, returned to his home town to manage a café run by a Christian organization called Mosaic Christian Development Association.
But Benton Harbor is not a big town and McGee ended up working at the small café after suffering a serious injury working in construction.
But Collins didn’t initially recognize McGee. It took a while, but finally McGee confronted the former officer over what he had done.
Collins told McGee he was right and could only apologize.
McGee forgave and today the two of them have not only become good friends, they actually go out on speaking engagements talking about redemption and forgiveness.