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Police: 2 escaped inmates from Louisiana jail detained, 2 others remain at large

Omarion Hookfin, 19, is one of four inmates who escaped from the Tangipahoa Parish jail over the weekend. Photo courtesy of Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office/Facebook
1 of 2 | Omarion Hookfin, 19, is one of four inmates who escaped from the Tangipahoa Parish jail over the weekend. Photo courtesy of Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office/Facebook

May 27 (UPI) -- Authorities in Louisiana searching for four inmates who escaped jail over the weekend said Monday that two of the escapees have been re-apprehended.

Chief Jimmy Travis of the Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office told reporters during a press conference Monday that Travon Johnson, 21, and Avery Guidry, 19, were detained Monday morning in Hammond, a city located about 45 miles east of Baton Rouge.

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The pair were located in a dumpster behind a Dollar General store near the intersection of Pumpkin Center Road and Old Baton Rouge Highway.

Travis explained a call had come in stating two people matching the descriptions of two of the escaped inmates had been located in the area, around which police then established a wide perimeter. The men were located with the use a drone, he said.

Johnson, Guidry, Omarion Hookfin, 19, and Jamarcus Cyprian, 20, escaped from the Tangipahoa Parish Jail over the weekend by exploiting weaknesses in the facility.

Travis said two escaped on Saturday afternoon and the others escaped on Sunday.

He said the inmates were able to create a hole in a corroded section of a chain-linked fence that surrounds the facility. They then climbed over two walls.

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Authorities only learned of the escape Sunday at about 3:30 p.m. when a relative contacted the warden to say that two of the men had gone to a relative's house in search of a place to stay.

Police then learned two others had escaped during their investigation.

"It's very concerning," Travis told reporters. "If the proper head counts had been conducted we would have known about it immediately."

He described the escape as a "failure," stating there were several issues that facilitated the jail break, including inadequate inmate supervision and barriers. He added that they are also short-staffed and the high turnover rate that the facility sees means the staff they do have is often inexperienced.

"We had a failure within that we hope to correct," he said. "Learn from our mistakes and move forward."

He said they have begun correcting issues with the barriers, and that additional razor wire will be installed on the two exterior walls.

"And if I have to go up there this afternoon or tomorrow and start stringing razor wire I will be happy to do so to ensure that we don't have that situation again," he said.

Authorities are still searching for Hookfin and Cyprian, but they believe that the inmates have fled Tangipahoa Parish, Travis said, while warning that anyone who aids them will face charges.

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Johnson, Hookfin and Guidry were in jail for a 2022 homicide in Hammond, while Cyprian was serving time for armed robbery and weapon charges.

Hoofkin was also charged with aggravated battery while incarcerated in a different parish.

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