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Investigation Continues Into Friday Escape From Putnam Jail

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Investigation Continues Into Friday Escape From Putnam Jail

The investigation continues inside the Putnam County Jail after convicted sex offender and felon Jack Janes escaped for several hours Friday.

Putnam County Sheriff Eddie Farris said the department will run an investigation for the next several weeks to uncover all of the details of the escape. He said taking a close look at what is happening inside the jail can uncover the details of how an escape was possible

“We’ve got to do better,” Farris said. “We can’t have that. That’s certainly something that shouldn’t be happening, so we’ll certainly address that and try to do better. Of course, you know, we do make human errors from time to time, so that was one of them, and hopefully that won’t happen again.”

Farris said a chase door leading to a small corridor through plumbing and mechanical devices was left unlocked. He said the inmate slipped through and dropped into a sally port entryway, allowing him to flee. Farris said the inmate was gone for quite some time before workers learned he was missing and could lock down the jail.

“Once that happens, obviously the whole jail is locked down,” Farris said. “What that means is, all the inmates go back to their original cells and are locked in there, including trustees and anybody else that we’ve got out working inside our facility. We do an emergency headcount to make sure that what we think is a missing inmate is actually a missing inmate.”

Farris said the investigation to continues to ensure that no in-house players were involved.

Farris said traffic in and out was stopped, visitation was suspended, and program activity was dismissed. Farris said the next important step was compiling information and alerting the public.

“Obviously, the public’s safety is number one,” Farris said. “Then, trying to apprehend the inmate to get them back in our facility. So, just a lot happening. It’s unfortunate that the inmate actually got out, but I was fortunate we were able to apprehend him in just a few hours, which is sometimes very difficult to do.”

He said escapes happen a few times a year across the state and are particularly difficult to prevent with the overcrowding jails have seen in recent years. He said inmates have a lot of time on their hands to plan an escape, so it is a constant work battle to prevent them from doing so.


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