In jailhouse interview, accused gunman claims innocence - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

In jailhouse interview, accused gunman claims innocence

WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) - A man locked up for attempted murder is sharing his story from behind bars, claiming he's innocent.

Charles Tilghman is charged with attempted murder, assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill and robbery with a dangerous weapon.

On November 3, 2011, a man was shot in the head on 6th Street. The man survived and told police he had been robbed.

Tilghman claimed he was a few blocks away, at a store on Rankin Street when the shooting happened.

In a jailhouse interview, Tilghman told us he is locked up for a crime he didn't commit.

"I think it is mistaken identity because most of the men out on the streets these days have beards and bald heads and they have mistaken me as the person who done it but I haven't done no crime," he said.

Tilghman said he is missing out on milestones with his two children, who are 8 and 18 years old.

"I feel traumatized," he said. "One of my kid's birthday is today. My oldest son is about to graduate in June and I'm in here for something I didn't do and it's really getting to me."

Tilghman owns up to the crimes he committed in the past, which includes charges of selling heroin, cocaine and marijuana. He said he served time in prison for those charges.

"Other crimes I've done in my life I have taken responsibility for but something like this, it really gets to me," he said. "I wake up every day and I know I haven't done this thing and being away from my family, my mother and my kids, it really bothers me."

He claims he had no reason to rob or shoot the victim, who he went to school with more than 20 years ago.

"I'm not a violent person," Tilghman said.  

Now, he plans to fight the charges against him, so he can get out of jail and be a father to his children.

Tilghman says he's been offered a plea deal of 10 years for admitting to the crime.

He said he would rather take his chances in front of a jury.

District Attorney Ben David said he couldn't talk about the case because it's ongoing. Police haven't released the name of the victim so we are unable to check on his condition.

Copyright 2012 WECT. All rights reserved.

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