Escaped Georgia inmates captured after chase in Tennessee

Wendy Jensen
June 16, 2017

"I'm happy. I'm elated, but I'm still tremendously sad about these (deceased) officers", Sills said about the capture almost 60 hours after the inmates escaped in Putnam County in central Georgia.

Donnie Russell Rowe and Ricky Dubose are the inmates accused of shooting and killing two Georgia correctional officers in Putnam County. Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills called the fugitive inmates "dangerous beyond description".

Authorities urged the public to be vigilant, and warned against approaching them. Police say they attempted to stop the risky duo after spotting a vehicle they believed the two were in. The pair then carjacked a driver who pulled up behind the bus, and fled in his Honda vehicle down state Highway 16 in Putnam County. Both escaped inmates were serving long sentences for armed robbery and other crimes. "They provided the most vital information at the most crucial time".

Signs of the fugitives turned up hours later and 25 miles (40 kilometers) north, in Madison, where authorities found the house ransacked and, hours later, the pickup stolen. There the two apparently stole a vehicle, which they drove to a house in Bedford County.

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Authorities put up roadblocks, only to discover Wednesday morning that the pickup had been stolen, from a site about 9 miles away from the burglary.

Investigators say they were last seen in a white 2008 Ford F-250 truck with a Georgia license plate BCX5372. "We do need the public's help".

Sills agreed with reporters that Dubose will have trouble hiding his prominent tattoos, which include crowns above his eyebrows, a star below his right ear and graffiti-style letters all across his neck.

Rowe had been serving a life sentence since 2002 over convictions including robbery and aggravated assault.

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Since their daring escape, and after abandoning the other prisoners in the bus, Rowe and Dubose vanished, and officials say they have few leads as to their whereabouts. The other prisoners on the bus, Sills said, "did not visibly participate" in the escape. "How they got through the locks and things up to that area I do not know". Shots were fired, but no one was injured, Keenan said.

The corrections department identified the victims as Christopher Monica, 42, who began working there in 2009, and Curtis Billue, 58, who would have marked his 10th anniversary with the department next month.

'I was afraid to go home.' #Breaking GA Corrections Dept. confirms escaped convicts accused of killing two officers were cellmates. pic.twitter.com/zTYY6zfrab- Richard Elliot (@RElliotWSB) June 14, 2017 Sills agreed that the two men are very risky. The FBI announced a tip line and said pictures of the men and information about a $130,000 reward would appear in multiple states.

Sills said it's likely the pair has left the Madison area.

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