Escaped inmate captured Sunday

Published 8:29 am Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Kaunda Lopaz Magee, 39, who escaped from the custody of a Washington Parish jail officer while being transported from a local hospital to the jail, was captured Sunday, Feb. 15, at approximately 11:50 a.m.

Magee escaped from custody shortly after 2 a.m. on Feb. 14 and fled on foot down Carter Street in Franklinton. An intense manhunt was launched, including the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office, Franklinton Police Department, Louisiana State Police, Louisiana Division of Probation and Parole, Rayburn Correctional Officers and canine teams and the United States Marshal’s Office.

The manhunt continued throughout the day on Saturday and throughout most of the night Saturday night. The search resumed early Sunday morning.

At approximately 11:50 a.m. Sunday morning, a Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office detective searching in the area of East Gate Shopping Center on Louisiana Highway 10 east in Franklinton, heard a noise coming from a large drain pipe, which crosses under Highway 10 near the shopping center. The detective investigated and discovered Magee inside the drain pipe. The detective entered the drain pipe and captured Magee without incident. Magee was still wearing handcuffs, which were on him at the time of the escape.

Magee was transported to the Washington Parish Jail, examined by medical personnel and provided appropriate medical treatment for wrist swelling apparently caused by the handcuffs he had been wearing for the past 36 hours.

According to Magee’s statements after his arrest, he hid in the woods in east Franklinton throughout the ordeal. He was aware of the search and reported seeing officers in the dense woods as he was hiding.

At the time of the arrest Magee was tired, wet and hungry. In addition to medical treatment, Magee was also provided with dry clothes and a meal.

Sheriff Randy Seal complimented all officers on the fine work they did in the search for Magee.

“The search efforts paid off. All the officers involved went above and beyond the call of duty in the search effort,” Seal said. “Just like Magee, they too, were tired and hungry, but they never gave up. Their fine efforts led to his capture. Citizens of Franklinton can sleep well tonight.”

Magee will face additional charges as a result of his escape from custody.

This wasn’t the first time Magee was the subject of a local manhunt. In 2011, he was pursued for multiple days in Washington and Tangipahoa parishes as well as in neighboring counties in Mississippi.