CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Sunday, November 6, 2005

Texas Death Row Inmate Still at Large UPDATE: CAPTURED

UPDATE: captured.   From "Jurors and victims’ relatives fear they might be targets of a death row inmate who freed himself from handcuffs and walked out of a county jail in civilian clothes.  Convicted killer Charles Victor Thompson remained at large Saturday, authorities said. Thompson, 35, fooled at least four jail employees when he walked out of the Harris County Jail on Thursday.

“This was 100 percent human error; that’s the most frustrating thing about it,” sheriff’s spokesman Lt. John Martin said Friday. “There were multiple failures. There were several points where it could have been prevented.”...

Several relatives of Thompson’s victims — his ex-girlfriend and her boyfriend — went into hiding or agreed to police protection, the Houston Chronicle reported...

Thompson was condemned in 1999 for the shooting deaths a year earlier of Hayslip, 39, and Darren Keith Cain, 30. The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals ordered he be resentenced and on Oct. 28 a new jury again recommended the death penalty. Thompson was being held in the county jail pending his transfer back to prison...

On Thursday, Thompson claimed he had an appointment with his lawyer and was taken to a meeting room. However, the visitor was not Thompson’s attorney. Martin said investigators were questioning the visitor but wouldn’t give details.

After the visitor left, Thompson removed his handcuffs and his bright orange prison jumpsuit and got out of a prisoner’s booth that should have been locked. He then left wearing a dark blue shirt, khaki pants and white tennis shoes, carrying a fake identification badge and claiming to work for the Texas Attorney General’s office." Story... [Mark Godsey]

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