Two women arrested for harboring Caddo County inmates

ANADARKO, Okla. – An anonymous phone call to Caddo County authorities leads to the arrest of two jail escapees who had been on the run for nine days.

Thomas Johnson, who often goes by the alias Anthony Mendonca, and Triston Cheadle were arrested at 204 Red Bud Drive in Anadarko around 3 a.m. Tuesday, less than three miles from the same Caddo County jail they escaped from on Oct. 27.

Sheriff Gene Cain said Cheadle was arrested without incident, however Johnson had to be pulled out of the home’s attic.

Cain says Cheadle’s girlfriend, Stephanie Leehmuis, who was living at the home, was also arrested for allegedly helping the two men.
Stephanie Leehmuis - Caddo County escapeed accomplice

After their escape, the sheriff says the fugitives made their way to Oklahoma City and Del City to see relatives.

“My thinking is they got up there and nobody would help them,” Cain said, “So they just decided they’d have to come back where they had friends, where they knew they might help them.”

Two other men who escaped with Johnson and Cheadle, Prime Brown and Dylan Three Irons, were caught by authorities the day after their breakout in Chickasha.

Cain said the men opened a trap door above the jail showers and crawled through the ventilation system, which led to an outside door.

He is grateful for the anonymous phone call and said it’s been a frustrating nine-day manhunt, one that received national attention.

“You just try to learn from the experience, you know?” he said. ” We thought we had a new jail. We thought it was secure. You just learn from things and try to go from there.”

New charges against the escapees are pending.


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