Three inmates in the White County Jail escaped from that facility on Saturday morning at around 3:00 a.m. Police discovered the escape at 5:30 a.m. A Carmi PD alert sent out by text at 7:44 a.m. alerted the public of the jailbreak. They were seen running through the alley behind the jail at 3:00 a.m. on security cameras.
24 year old Zachery J. Shock from McLeansboro, 28 year old Justin Bray from Allendale, and 61 year old Johnny Tipton of Elizabethtown used a pipe to dig a hole through layers of concrete block, insulation and brick to make a hole approximately 16 inches tall and 15 inches wide on the outside of the building. The hole on the inside is smaller. Shock, age 24, 5’10” 175lbs, with brown hair and blue eyes, is charge with Aggravated Battery. with Firearm/Murder; Justin M. Bray, age 28, 6.0:, 185 lbs. with brown hair, and hazel eyes, is charge with Unlawful use of a weapon; Johnny E Tipton, age 61, 200 lbs., with gray hair and blue eyes, is charged with Theft. All three are considered dangerous and the public is asked to not approach them.
Justin Bray was first located in a car chase in Grayville late Saturday morning that ended up in a crash by the Wabash river. Bray jumped out of the car and jumped in the river. The driver of the car was arrested. Later Bray was caught Saturday evening in the Calvin bottoms in an oil tank. No word of the other two at this time.
The Sheriff’s department put out this report: On 06/16/18 at approximately 7:34 p.m., Justin M Bray was taken into custody at a rural location east of Crossville. Bray was spotted walking along a county road, he fled on foot and was located in an oil field tank. The White County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by US Marshal Service, Illinois State Police and Carmi K-9 unit. Bray was taken into custody with no incident and transported to White County Jail where he will face escape charges. Bail was set at one million dollars.
You are encouraged to contact the White County Sheriff’s Office at 618-382-5321 if you know the whereabouts of the other two. It is believed that they split off from Bray and may be together.
A press release on Monday from the Sheriff’s Department stated that the the two remaining escapees had been reportedly seen one mile north of the intersection of Illinois Rtes. 1 and 141. The motorists reprted the subjects had left the roadway and ran into a wooded area between Norris City and Omaha. They were wearing shorts and no shirt.
Officers from numerous departments from White County and surrounding counties responded to this area. A drone from Hamilton County and two K-9 dogs from the Illinois State Police were called to the area. A massive effort to locate the two individuals was undertaken. At press time, they have not been located. The public is warned that these individuals are dangerous and if seen, contact local law enforcement immediately. Do not assist them in any way.
Three subjects have been held in connection with the escape and White County States Attorney Denton Aud filed formal charges against them on Monday morning. They are Wendi M. Owen of Grayville, Carly D. Schmittler of Grayville, and Elijah R. Locher of Crossville. Owen is already on bond awaiting sentencing for the felony offense of possession of weapon by felon, a class 3 felony. New charges relating to the escape include aggravated battery, criminal damage to government support property, aggravated assault and aiding a fugitive, aggravated fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer and driving while license revoked. Schmittler was placed on probation this past Wednesday for the felony offense of possession of methamphetamine, a class 3 felony. She now faces charges of attempted aiding escape, and attempted concealing or aiding a fugitive. Elijah Locher has been released while the states attorney reviews all the statements.
The intense manhunt Saturday and Sunday snagged other unexpected lawbreakers in its net. At 4:59 a.m. on Sunday morning, a report from Keaton Pollard of Carmi came into dispatch about someone stealing his ATV. The ATV had been taken from behind his grandfather’s house. He said he could hear it heading west.
At 6:17 a.m. a call from Marsha Humphrey at 1425 Co. Rd. 1950 said that a white male subject with no shirt, short dark hair and tattoo came to the back their residence and was drinking out of the outside faucet. Her husband confronted the subject and the subject went back in the woods south of their residence. Sheriff Doug Maier was notified and organized a search detail to the Humphrey’s residence due to the large manhunt being conducted. White County Sherriff’s department, Carmi Police Dept. the Drug Task Force, Norris City Police and a canine Unit from Mt. Carmel Police and an airplane overhead for surveillance was provided by Greg Brown. Jim Sullivan piloted the aircraft. The suspect was immediately located with a few yards of the back yard of the residence. The suspect, identified as Timothy Wilson of Crossville, was not one of the escapees, but was detained due to suspicious activity.
Sheriff Doug Maier questioned Wilson about the ATV, and he admitted stealing it from Pollard. Wilson was transported to the White County Jail to be processed for the theft. Officer Agee located a cigarette lighter, a green glass pipe and small baggie containing a crystal white substance, which field tested positive for methamphetamine. Wilson was charged with Theft over $500, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia and Possession of less than 10 grams methamphetamine.
On Sunday evening, someone reported a male walking down Rte. 1 north of Norris City. Police set up intersections. This person could not be located.
While driving home, Officer Graves observed an older red Chevy car turning onto 400 East in the same general area where police had been searching. He pulled up in a side by side nextto the white male with brown hair and asked him to stop. The suspect indicated he would pull over, but sped off heading south to Rte. 1 where he attempted to turn left towards Carmi. When he finally stopped, he attempted to flee on foot, but police blocked him. He was ordered to the ground and handcuffed without further incident. Upon closer observation, it was determined the suspect was not one of the jail escapees, but instead was one Brian Ball who was trying to flee because he was driving on suspended license. An Altoids container was located in his front shorts pocket which contained 15 hits of acid. This was taken into evidence as Exhibit #1.
Norris City Police Officer Shawn Stokes assisted Sgt. Craig Poole in a tow inventory of the vehicle which located a black colored sunglass carrier with a glass smoking pipe. The pipe was located under the driver’s side seat. The pipe field tested positive for methamphetamine. This will be Exhibit #2.
Wilson is being held in White County Jail.