A Buffalo man, Jay Whitley, will not be facing charges after breaking into a school to shelter 24 people during the winter storm, police officials confirmed on Thursday
A Buffalo man will not be facing charges after breaking into a school to shelter 24 people during the winter storm, police officials confirmed on Thursday.
Jay Whitley was left stranded on Christmas Eve when his truck got stuck in the snow, which was going to leave him with no option but to sleep inside the vehicle with two strangers.
As temperatures continued to decrease, Jay began knocking on several people’s doors in hopes of securing proper shelter for the night, but despite offering $500, he was turned down by every family.
“It’s the only time in my life I actually thought I was going to die,” Jay told WBEN as he walked back to his car. Eventually, his car ran out of gas, which meant that if he didn’t find shelter soon, there was a great chance he was going to freeze to death. That’s when Jay took notice of a school roughly 700 feet from where he was parked. He explained, “I knew the power would be on, there would be heat in there and I was guaranteeing there would be food in there.”
After breaking in through the entrance door, Jay alerted 24 other drivers who’d also been left stranded (several of which were disabled and elderly) to seek shelter in the building, where they not only had heating but food and drinks, yet only helping themselves to things they needed. As the storm gradually began to leave the area, Jay left a note at the building the following day apologizing for the break-in.