Authorities are searching for a convicted murderer after he and a fellow inmate escaped their Ohio prison and crossed state lines. The Henderson Police Department in Kentucky asked the public to keep an eye out for Bradley Gillespie, 50.
“Continue to stay vigilant, lock your doors, and contact 911 if you see anyone matching the description or have unlocked buildings that Gillespie could be hiding,” cops wrote.
Police said they spotted a stolen vehicle at 3:16 a.m. on Wednesday. They believed Gillespie and convicted burglar James Marion Lee, 47, were in it.
Cops described initiating a traffic stop, but the vehicle fled. The suspect car crashed on Camaro Drive and the inmates took off on foot, though police managed to capture Lee. Gillespie remains on the run. Cops said Wednesday that they and other agencies are searching the area around Camaro Drive.
“Gillespie is 6’ tall, 200 pounds, 50 years old, was last seen wearing dark clothing and appeared to still have a bald head,” cops wrote.
The search for the pair started Tuesday at the Allen/Oakwood Correctional Institution in Lima, Ohio. Authorities realized that Lee was missing during a prisoner count at 11 a.m., according to the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction.
The warden, Angela Stuff, approved an emergency county of all prisoners, and authorities determined Gillespie was also gone.
“During the course of the investigation, prison officials determined Gillespie and Lee were last observed on surveillance video inside the facility at 8:41 a.m. on May 22,” prison officials wrote.
U.S. Marshals, the Ohio State Highway Patrol and the Allen County Sheriff’s Office offered up to a $21,000 reward for information leading to the capture of the pair, according to the statement, released before Lee’s capture.
They asked that anyone with information contact the Findlay Patrol Post at 419-423-1414 or the U.S. Marshal Service at 1-866-4WANTED.
“If either escapee is located by the public, do not approach them and contact 9-1-1 immediately,” they wrote.
The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction is also running an internal investigation, they said.
Jurors in Pauling, Ohio, convicted Gillespie in 2016 of murdering Hannah Fischer and her boyfriend, Frank Tracy Jr., according to The Bryan Times.
Gillespie reportedly told investigators that Tracy held a gun to his head and that it frightened him so much he urinated.
“It really impacted him. It impacted him so much that he wanted to get even with the drug dealer,” Paulding County Prosecutor Joseph Burkard said in closing arguments, according to the Times. “You will hear there is no DNA from Bradley Gillespie. If you think about it, if you plan something you are probably gonna plan for that to happen. You are not going to leave any DNA. That is what happened here. Whether he used gloves, I don’t know. The fact that there is not DNA should not be enough to acquit him in this case.”
Records show Gillespie was sentenced to life in prison. He is set to be eligible for parole in February 2048.
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