Home / National News / West Virginia jail escapee found in Texas trying to cross into Mexico


(LAREDO, Texas) — A West Virginia inmate whose escape from jail went unnoticed for nearly two days almost made it across the Mexican border.

Todd Wayne Boyes was nabbed early Sunday morning in Laredo, Texas, as he tried to cross the Rio Grande River into Mexico.

The capture of the 43-year-old from Caldwell, Ohio, came after a 36-hour manhunt.

Boyes somehow bolted from South Central Regional Jail in Charleston, West Virginia, early in the morning on Oct. 25, the day he was supposed to get sentenced for his conviction for fleeing from police, causing bodily injury and possession of a stolen car. He faced three to 20 years in prison.

Authorities are investigating how the bespectacled Boyes apparently managed to ditch his inmate jumpsuit for khakis, white sneakers and zip-up jacket, and walk out of the jail at around 5:50 a.m. Oct. 25, according to the West Virginia Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety.

State police said they were not notified of his escape until 43 hours later, at around 12:30 a.m. Friday.

Despite three formal, end-of-shift head counts, none were able to pinpoint Boyes’ disappearance, Lawrence Messina, a spokesman for the public safety department, said in a statement.

The jail discovered he was missing in head count at 7 p.m. Thursday, according to ABC News affiliate WCHS-TV in Charleston.

Afterward, a review of the facility’s security video yielded footage of Boyes leaving the facility the previous morning.

A Charleston lawyer told WCHS-TV that he alerted the jail to the escape after he met with a client at the facility.

Lawyer Kevin Davis told the station that his client phoned him Wednesday morning to say he had “life-or-death” information. During a 4 p.m. jailhouse visit that day, the client told Davis about the escaped inmate.

“Officials at both the Regional Jail Authority and the Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety consider the incident to be a grave and unacceptable breach of their core duty to protect their fellow West Virginians,” a news release from the Department of Military Affairs and Public Safety said. “We intend to address the episode and the results of the ongoing investigation with the utmost seriousness.”

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