Escaped North Central Regional Jail inmate found in Wood County

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A North Central Regional Jail Inmate is back in custody after breaking out of a Wood County holding facility on Wednesday

Prior to his escape, Anthony Douglas, 33, of Parkersburg had been alone in the facility’s interview room while awaiting transfer back to North Central Regional Jail following a court appearance, according to state officials. Authorities believe that Douglas broke through drywall into a hallway, and escaped through a rear door around 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday. 

According to state officials, the hole was discovered early Thursday, and once an emergency headcount confirmed Douglas was missing, the facility immediately alerted law enforcement at 9:24 a.m.

A United States Marshals Service fugitive task force, which included Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety personnel, located Douglas on Parkersburg’s south side around 10:40 a.m. on Thursday. Officials said that Douglas is being charged with escape and felony destruction of property. 

The West Virginia Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety’s (DMAPS) Division of Corrections and Rehabilitation began leasing the facility that Douglas escaped from in July 2018. Officials said that preliminary information suggests that a facility officer left the inmate unattended for around four hours starting at approximately 2:30 p.m. on Wednesday, after he was interviewed by a law enforcement officer.

Division Commissioner Betsy Jividen said the incident is under internal review by its Inspector General section, and the Wood County Sheriff’s Office is conducting a parallel criminal investigation. DMAPS Secretary Jeff Sandy said that once these are complete, appropriate actions will occur. 

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