The two violent inmates who escaped a Mississippi penitentiary last week have been apprehended, the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation said.
The MBI, the US Marshals Service and state Department of Corrections took David May, 42, into custody Sunday, the bureau said in a news release, and Dillion Williams, 27, was captured Monday afternoon, the Department of Corrections tweeted.
The men escaped Friday, authorities said. The 2011 GMC pickup truck used in the escape has been recovered and is being processed by the MBI crime scene unit.
Corrections officials discovered May and Williams were missing from the Mississippi State Penitentiary in Parchman during an emergency inmate count conducted at 1:45 a.m. (2:45 a.m. ET) Saturday. The prison, situated in the Mississippi Delta and known as Parchman Farm, is about 100 miles south of Memphis, Tennessee.
May is serving a life sentence for two aggravated assault convictions, and Williams is serving 40 years for residential burglary and aggravated assault, officials said.
Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant tweeted praise to the authorities involved in the captures.
“We will now find whoever helped with this escape and charge them as well,” he said.
Violent week for state prisons
The escapes came after a week of disturbances at Mississippi prisons that left five inmates dead, including three at Parchman, officials said.
It’s unclear whether the escapes are related to the violence, some of which was gang-related, according to officials.
Sunflower County Coroner Heather Burton last week responded to three fatal stabbings in three days at Parchman, she said in a statement. The first came Wednesday, and Burton was not immediately able to reach the victim because of a gang-related riot, she said. The victim had been pronounced dead by the time she began her investigation, she said.
Thursday afternoon, she responded to Parchman and found a man had been stabbed in a gang riot and died, and Friday, she learned a man had been stabbed that morning during an altercation with his cellmate, she said.
The Friday death and a minor fire at Parchman were unrelated to the disturbances, officials said.
One prisoner was killed at South Mississippi Correctional Institution in Leakesville, and another inmate died at Chickasaw County Regional Correctional Facility in Houston, said Mississippi Corrections Commissioner Pelicia Hall.
Several inmates were injured in the violence.
Conditions stable, officials say
State, private and regional facilities will remain on lockdown during an investigation, officials said. All movement at three state penitentiaries, three privately managed prisons and 15 regional facilities will be limited to emergencies.
Conditions were stable at the prisons as of Sunday, the Department of Corrections said. The Mississippi Department of Public Safety and State Highway Patrol are assisting the department.
“We are continuing to assess the population,” Hall said. “We are still being very mindful and watchful.”
Hall is stepping down later this month to take a job in the private sector, she said in a statement to CNN affiliate WJTV.
“I am truly excited about the new opportunity I now have because it will allow me to continue being an advocate for criminal justice reform and to support better wages and working conditions for the Department of Corrections employees, for whom I have been honored to serve,” she said.