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County jail to be cited, failed to report escapees in timely manner

UPDATE: 6/12 – Uncovered documents prove Custer County authorities reported escape in timely manner

Two county jails in Oklahoma will be cited for failing to report escapees in a timely manner to the proper authorities.

Anytime an inmate escapes, the State Department of Health must be notified.

However, only one of three recent escapes in Oklahoma were reported until NewsChannel 4 made a few phone calls.

Just within the past couple of weeks there have been three inmates escaped from Oklahoma jails.

Two were in Murray County.

The first incident happened on May 24 and involved an inmate named Roger Goodall.

He was a trustee who made a run for it while taking out the trash. He was later caught in Texas.

A second escape occurred in the same county on June 4.

Inmate Brandon Evans was at the booking counter for a phone call when he jumped through a window, ran down a hall and then out a door.

He stole a car, crashed it and then took off running.

Then in Custer County another inmate escaped who was caught a few days later in the metro.

However, of those three escapes, the state jail division administrator, John Judge, Jr., said he knew about only one of those escapes, the June escape in Murray County, until NewsChannel Four notified him of the other two.

The state must be notified within one day of an escape that doesn’t involve an injury.

Judge says he received a fax from the Murray County Jail after NewsChannel 4 called to confirm the escapes had been reported.

The Custer County incident was not reported as of Tuesday, and just like the June 4 Murray County escape, Judge says he was not made aware of that escape until he was contacted by NewsChannel 4.

“After I got your email that’s when I’d realized there had been an escape,” Judge said.

Both Murray and Custer Counties will be cited for failing to report escapes to the state in a timely manner.

“They will get a notice of violation from the department,” Judge said. “You don’t want individuals going to jail and then all of sudden they’re out walking in the community because they’re not supervised properly.”

After the counties are cited, county officials will have to provide the State Health Department a plan that details how the county will prevent another escape from happening.