Sapulpa Police Body Cam Video Shows Escapee Arrest

Friday, June 12th 2015, 6:25 pm
By: News On 6

A prison escapee is in the hospital after crashing during a police chase. 

Ronald Thomas escaped from the Jackie Brannon Correctional Center on Monday.

A Sapulpa police captain spotted Thomas Thursday night on a motorcycle they say was stolen in Tulsa County earlier in the day. The officer's body camera captured footage of what happened.

U.S. Marshals had been in Sapulpa earlier in the week and spotted the escapee. He took off and managed to get away.

When a Sapulpa officer spotted him Thursday night, he took off again, but this time, it ended differently.

Body camera footage shows the officer driving behind Ronald Thomas as he sped through Sapulpa, sometimes, reaching 100 miles an hour. Then Thomas crashes the motorcycle into a truck parked on the side of the road.

The officer says Thomas was thrown nearly 200 feet off the bike. Officers immediately called for an ambulance and worked to keep Thomas stable until help arrived.

Records show he was serving 20 years for taking another vehicle in Washington County and has previous convictions in several other counties as well.

The officer hadn't even turned on his police lights yet when Thomas took off.

"When his headlights hit the motorcycle, the motorcycle just bolted - and so the officer knew something was up," said Deputy Chief Mike Haefner, Sapulpa Police Department.

They're glad the chase happened late at night when very few other cars were on the road. Creek County deputies, Oklahoma Highway Patrol troopers and Sand Springs officers all helped watch for any citizens along the chase route.

They say it's good Thomas is in custody, and no one else was hurt.

"Very good, we go out here and put these people where they belong, which is in prison," Haefner said. "That's why we're here, to protect our citizens and communities we serve."

After he gets out of the hospital, Thomas will be shipped back to Jackie Brannon to face charges of escape. He'll also face charges here, including running from police and stealing the motorcycle. 

6/12/2015 Related Story: Prison Escapee Crashes In High-Speed Chase Near Sand Springs