Entries in Indian River County (1)


Two Florida Inmates Stage ‘Elaborate’ Escape

US Marshals Service(VERO BEACH, Fla.) -- Florida police are on the hunt for two “dangerous” cellmates they believe escaped through a jail vent Monday morning.

Both Rondell Reed, 51 who escaped a North Carolina prison before being recaptured more than 20 years ago, and Leviticus Taylor, 25, were being held in connection with separate first-degree murder cases.

No one realized the two were missing until a routine headcount about 4:54 a.m. at the Indian River County Corrections Facility in Indian County, Fla., according to officials there. A hunt for both men immediately ensued, and soon afterward police found their red jumpsuits in a service area.

“It was a very elaborate scheme and it was very detailed in the way they departed the premises,” Indian River County Sheriff Deryl Loar said. “It’s an escape that when all the details come out, you won’t believe it.”

Police suspect that the men might have received help because they somehow managed to get over a 12-foot brick wall or 12-foot fence covered with razor wire without being detected. Indian River officials also suspect that they received transportation to get away from the prison.

The U.S Marshals Service, Homeland Security and other law enforcement agencies are involved in the search. They were searching a wooded area near Vero Beach, Fla., earlier Monday. Police are unsure if either man is armed, but both are considered to be dangerous. Officials are checking prison cameras to see if the escape was captured.

Taylor was convicted of murder last month and was scheduled for sentencing Nov. 10. Reed is accused of murdering a Florida shop owner, and police say he was caught driving the victim's stolen Corvette in Indiana.

Reed, who is originally from Kentucky, is clean-shaven and no longer has the beard seen in his photo. Police say he has a past history of shooting at law enforcement.

Taylor’s photo shows him with long hair, but police say it’s now cropped. Police say his age and multiple relations make it more probable that he will be caught first.

“We do know both these men have relationships all over the United States from Texas, to New Jersey, to Indiana to Kentucky. That’s why we have implored federal agencies to assist us,” Sheriff Loar said.

The men have been cellmates for only five days but police believe they have had contact in the past few months. Both have multiple tattoos on their arms and bodies.

Police are offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to their re-arrest.

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