1 of 2 | A body believed to belong to Bradley Gillespie, a 50-year-old inmate who escaped from an Ohio correctional facility last week, has been found in Kentucky. Photo courtesy of Ohio State Highway Patrol/Twitter
May 28 (UPI) -- An inmate convicted of murder who escaped from an Ohio correctional facility last week has been found dead in Kentucky, authorities said.
The body of 50-year-old Bradley Gillespie was recovered Sunday from the Ohio River between the Hayes Boat Ramp and the riverfront boat ramp in the Kentucky city of Henderson.
The discovery was first announced by the U.S. Marshals Service on Twitter.
Authorities had been hunting for Gillespie and James Lee, 47, since they were discovered missing from the Allen/Oakwood Correctional institution in Lima, Ohio, during a prisoner count on Tuesday.
Lee, who was serving time for burglary and safe cracking, was recaptured a day after his escape. Gillespie was incarcerated for a 2016 conviction on two counts of murder.
Henderson Police Department Chief Sean McKinney told reporters during a press conference that they were notified of the body early Sunday afternoon by a boater on the Ohio River. The location of the body, he said, was near the last known whereabouts of the fugitive.
"We're glad to have closure to this situation and this event," McKinney said. "However, I do not feel it is appropriate to celebrate death of any life at this time."
He added that the decomposition of the body is consistent with one that has been exposed to water for four or five days.
An autopsy has been scheduled for Tuesday.
The pair are believed to have escaped the prison by concealing themselves in a dumpster. Authorities said they were last observed on surveillance video inside the facility at 8:41 a.m. on Monday.
Shortly after 3 a.m. Wednesday, Lee was spotted by highway patrol officers driving a stolen red Mercury Capri in Henderson, with a passenger beside him, who was believed to be Gillespie.
As police attempted to perform a traffic stop, the vehicle fled. Following a short pursuit, the red car crashed into a fence. Both fugitives attempted to flee the scene on foot, but Lee was taken into custody while Gillespie evaded capture.
One of Gillespie's shoes was later found two streets from the vehicle crash.
McKinney said they believed Gillespie was injured.
The discovery of Gillespie's body comes after his daughter had pleaded for him to turn himself in.
"I want you in my life. I want you at my wedding. I don't want anything bad to happen," his daughter said in an emotional video published to the social media accounts of the Ohio State Highway Patrol. "So, if you could please turn yourself in before anyone gets hurt, I'd appreciate it. We want you safe. We want you back. We want nothing bad to happen."