Both Escapees From Wagoner County Jail Back In Custody
WAGONER COUNTY, Oklahoma - A short stint of freedom came to an end for two Green Country escapees Tuesday morning.
Larry Cotton, 35, was arrested early Tuesday inside a vacant apartment in south Wagoner. Mickey Staggs, 38, was arrested later in the morning. After a 15-hour manhunt, the two are back behind bars.
After the two inmates broke out of the Wagoner County jail, more than five law enforcement agencies jumped into action to help find the ex-cons.
In a surveillance video, you can see a jailer walking up the stairs.
Sheriff Bob Colbert says Larry Cotton and Mickey Staggs lured the jailer into a cell. After that, the sheriff said the inmates overpowered the jailer, stole his keys, locked him in the cell and took off running.
"This is at a very busy time. Other officers were booking inmates in. We had deputies inside the booking area booking prisoners in, so they knew this was the right time to try to make this move," Colbert said.
Investigators believe the move was planned in advance. The sheriff said the inmates' recorded phone calls reveal they started plotting this escape about a week ago.
"They were throwing shoes and clothes as they were running, so they left a pretty good trail. They told us which direction to start looking," Colbert said.
Investigators say the inmates ran toward southern Wagoner County and knocked on a man's door in the middle of the night.
Hours later, workers at the Autumn Wood Apartment Complex tell us they saw Cotton go inside a vacant apartment.
"All the leads we got were from the public. They started assisting us from the very beginning," Colbert said.
Cotton appeared to be dirty and beat down as deputies escorted him back inside the jail.
"He is scratched up, dirty, muddy. I'm sure he's probably glad to be back in our facility," Colbert said.
Shortly before noon, U.S. Marshals captured Staggs. They say he was coming out of a creek and walking up a hill to Highway 51.
"We'll go over any of our procedures to see if we've done anything wrong, need to make any changes. We have an obligation to the city and our county to keep our citizens safe and we're going to do that," Colbert said.
The district attorney has charged Staggs and Cotton with robbery, escape and assault and battery on an detention officer.
Sheriff Colbert is not releasing the name of the jailer who was attacked, but he said the jailer does have some minor injuries and he will be off for a few days.