Lamar County escapee supervised by road worker - WDAM - TV 7 - News, Weather and Sports

Lamar County escapee supervised by road worker

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LAMAR COUNTY, MS (WDAM) -

A Lamar County inmate fled a work detail Monday morning, leaving many puzzled as to how he managed to leave the scene, and who was responsible for him.

When traveling along roadways, it is not uncommon to notice inmates working on the road side. However, according to Lamar County Sheriff Danny Rigel, the escapee was working under the supervision of county workers, not sworn officers. 

"This particular inmate was assigned to the road department, and he was supervised by an employee of the road department."

According to Lamar County road manager Tommy Jones, the inmate was with a non-sworn county employee near the Bellevue area along Highway 98. 

Jones said that the employee was helping Thompson load a piece of equipment when he jumped in the van and took off.

"I'm not going to say if any policies were broken or not, but we are looking into that and we are going to look at it real closely and see if any changes need to be made," said Rigel.

Rigel and county workers will continue to address the issue Thursday during the board of supervisors meeting.

"This is the first time that I know of in eight years since we had this program that anybody has walked off from one of our work programs," said Rigel. "One is not acceptable, I'm not saying that's right, if changes need to be made, we are going to make changes."

Jones also said that he has been pushing for GPS systems in county vehicles, and thinks this may help the problem. 

Rigel added that they feel confident that Thompson has fled the area, and they are working with U.S. Marshalls Task Force in hopes of apprehending him quickly. 

To view the Lamar County Inmate Work Detail Policy, see this document:

https://www.dropbox.com/s/3vfzm13lopbf58g/WorkProgram.pdf