Local News

Three Vance Co. Jail Escapees Still at Large

Posted March 6, 2001

— Three men remain on the run after escaping from the Vance County Jail Wednesday evening. A fourth man was captured immediately.

The three remaining inmates are reportedly considered extremely dangerous.

Sheriff Thomas Breedlove believes the men escaped from the jail by entering the control booth around 8 p.m., restraining a corrections officer and leaving through an "escape route" designed for the jailer. The officer was not injured.

The four apparently jumped from the first-story roof, where one inmate, Anthony Jones, broke both of his ankles. Jones was apprehended.

The other escapees are Anthony James, 21, Aaron Lavor Harris, 22, and Eric Sharpe, 28.

Breedlove says the men had to go over a large fence and razor wire to escape, and that one of them may have cut himself badly.

The inmates were wearing orange jail garb without handcuffs. All three were awaiting trial.

Breedlove says that he has no idea where they are headed or how they are traveling. He blames an inexperienced jailer for the break.

Henderson Police and the officers with the Division of Motor Vehicles are assisting in the search. They are in the process of contacting friends and family of the escapees.

Escapes from the Vance County Jail are nothing new:

  • May 8, 2000:Accused murdererNathaniel Lewisescaped from the jail. After a nationwide search, he was caught in New York several days later.
  • May 22, 2000:Seven inmates staged a fire to cover their escape from the jail. They were all eventually caught.

    Sheriff Breedlove blamed the county for not spending more money to have guards that are better trained and better paid. In September of 2000, county leaders approved a 6-percent pay raise.

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