A man convicted of burglary in Tallahatchie County escaped from prison in New Albany over the Labor Day weekend and was captured Monday in Pope.
Inmate Richard Willis, 34, escaped the Union County Jail in New Albany Friday night and was found late Monday night hiding in a small room near the rear of a building in Pope. Authorities are trying to find out how Willis traveled the 75 miles to Panola County.
“If one of our inmates escapes, we will work with all law enforcement and won’t stop until he is caught,” Commissioner Burl Cain said. “Hopefully, this inmate now has gotten that message.”
Cain also thanked members of the MDOC’s Special Response Team and Corrections Investigation Division linked with the U.S. Marshals Service, the Panola County Sheriff’s Office, the Mississippi Highway Patrol and authorities in Union and Tallahatchie counties.
Willis, MDOC #220574, was moved from the Rankin County prison earlier this year to the Union County Jail to participate in the County/State Work Program.
He is facing several charges that, upon conviction, likely will add more time to his current eight years for residential burglary in Tallahatchie County. He also received five years’ probation for possession of methamphetamine in Yalobusha County to run concurrently with the burglary conviction.