Three in custody after attempted escape

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 19, 2020

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This past weekend, two inmates escaped the Escambia County jail. The call reportedly came in around 3:15 a.m. on Feb. 15, 2020. According to the Sheriff Heath Jackson, the 911 call was received that two men wearing orange clothing were seen running from the Escambia County Work Release Barracks.

Following the call, an immediate lockdown was ordered and a head count was conducted. Two inmates—Gregory Smith, 24, of Woodbury, TN, and Hunter Madden, 33, of Brewton—could not be found.

Later that morning, a perimeter was established and the K9 team from the Alabama Department of Corrections was requested.  A K9 track was conducted and Smith was located approximately 5 ½ miles away in a wooded area.  Later that afternoon, while doing surveillance on Pea Ridge Road, Madden was seen exiting a wooded area and getting into a car.  A traffic stop was conducted and he was taken back into custody.   Both inmates were charged with Escape.

Regarding the charges, Jackson stated, “Smith was being held for Theft of Property 1st Degree.  Madden was being held for Counterfeiting, Possession of a Controlled Substance, Attempting to Allude, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.”

An investigation of the incident was conducted and it was determined that both inmates were assisted by Correctional Officer Deidra Madden, 47, of Castleberry. As reported by the Jackson, Madden left a security door propped open to let the two escape. Madden was arrested and booked into the Escambia County jail. Her employment with the agency was terminated, and she was charged with two counts of facilitating an escape.

Grateful for all the assistance in the matter, Jackson concluded, “Thank you to the Brewton Police Department, Alabama Department of Corrections K9 Team, Central Bail Bonding, and the community for their tips.”