Escaped inmate captured in Bowling Green, another still on the run

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MACON COUNTY, Tenn. -- Two Tennessee inmates are back in custody this morning, one of them found in Bowling Green.

Matt White was able to cover about 50 miles since Tuesday night after escaping from the Macon County jail with two other inmates.

White is a man convicted of drug and theft charges. He was located in Bowling Green just after 6 p.m. Wednesday but no reports describe where exactly he was found.

The other two men he escaped with are identified as Dylan Ferguson and Jeff Strong.

Ferguson is a murder suspect accused of killing Brandon Fye.

Fye's mother, Jacquelyn Tucker brought the security of Macon County jail into question after the escape.

"He damaged the facility before and now he's gotten away with it so I just wonder how strong their security is for this county jail," said Tucker.

The county sheriff says the security is lacking but that's because of a lack of funding.

"The county commission is working to get funding," says Sheriff Marc Gammons, "it's a small rural community so funding is hard to get."

On Wednesday Ferguson turned himself back in to authorities. Officials say his family convinced him to do so.

Jeff Strong is the only one of the three still at large. He was sentenced to do time for drug and theft convictions, like Matt White.

Reports claim the three inmates used a bed post to pry out a small speaker in a prison cell, chipped away at cinder blocks to create a hole in the wall, and then they tied their jumpsuits and bed sheets together. Their makeshift rope enabled them to rappel down two-stories and into a maintenance closet. From there they walked out the door.

Reports claim that they stole one of their uncle's trucks and drove away.

Their disappearance was not noticed until a head count some time later.

Sheriff Gammons says that the lack of funding is only made worse by their issue with overcrowding.

The Macon County jail was built to hold 125 inmates.

It holds over 200.

Gammons says they can't afford to hire enough staff to keep an eye on all those inmates and they also can't even afford to put a security fence around the entire facility.

Until that happens, the jail staff will have to make due with what they have.

For starters, the sheriff says they are looking at reinforcing speakers in other cells so inmates can't do the same thing again..

Authorities have not announced where Jeff Strong may be. If you happen to see him, do not approach him.

Call (615) 666-7155 if you have any information on where Strong is.



 
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