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Lax fence suspected in escape

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A loose fence was Gerry Haynes' likely way of escape from the Charles B. Webster Detention Center on Sunday.

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Gerry Haynes left the Charles B. Webster Detention Center on Phinizy Road on Sunday and was caught nine hours later.  Zach Boyden-Holmes/Staff
Zach Boyden-Holmes/Staff
Gerry Haynes left the Charles B. Webster Detention Center on Phinizy Road on Sunday and was caught nine hours later.

Sheriff Ronnie Strength believes Haynes might have been working on loosening the fence gradually. The security fence for the recreation yard was moved inward about 10 months ago to make room for new buildings on the property.

"When the fence was moved in, the bottom, right-hand corner of the fence was not as secure as it should have been," the sheriff said. "Over a period of time he was able to work the fence loose and push it far enough so he could get out."

Haynes, 32, had been at the detention center since June 2 on charges of burglary and felony theft by receiving stolen property, according to jail records.

He was one of two suspects in a string of four burglaries across Augusta and North Augusta in April and May, according to incident reports.

The construction is part of a long-range plan to move all inmates from the Richmond County jail on Walton Way to the detention center on Phinizy Road.

The sheriff estimated that Haynes was gone for less than an hour before staff discovered him missing about 3 p.m. Sunday.

"At that point the jail was locked down," he said.

Investigators received a lot of tips Sunday, according to Strength, including one from a man who knew Haynes. The man told investigators Haynes had been spotted near Martin Luther King Boulevard and 12th Street.

After officers tracked the escapee down in the area about 12:30 a.m. Monday, "it was a short chase," he said.

Haynes fled on foot and bicycle before being caught, the sheriff said.

A charge of escape has been added to Haynes' previous charges.

Strength said he has already met with staff to discuss ways to enforce extra security during construction. Crews have also begun securing the damaged fence.

"This is a very secure facility," he said, "but during construction a lot of walls are moved and fences are moved, so we have to take special precautions."

The sheriff would not detail what precautions the jail will be taking "for security purposes."

Currently, there is no target date for the end of construction at the Phinizy Road location, which will add more pods for incoming prisoners from the Walton Way location.

After the first phase is completed, the detention center will be able to house 1,300 prisoners. Capacity will be added with each phase.

However, Strength said prisoners will not be transferred until all construction is completed and the building has been put back together securely.

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Miss Hap
0
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Miss Hap 07/19/10 - 07:56 am
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I wonder if he meant that

I wonder if he meant that he'd "messed up" because he'd gotten caught for the burglary of if he'd "messed up" by escaping and more charges would be tacked on after he got picked up again?
His mama must be so proud.

corgimom
27428
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corgimom 07/19/10 - 08:12 am
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Miss H, his mama is used to

Miss H, his mama is used to it by now- how sad.

AC, 6/4/10 A burglary at an additional location has been added to the report of two men arrested Tuesday for burglaries at two Computer Exchange locations and The Money Tree, police said.

Officers are also charging Gerry Haynes, 32, of the 1900 block of Walden Drive and Ernest Harris, 28, of the 3400 block of Jonathan Circle, with a burglary at Rent-A-Center, 1647 Gordon Highway, on May 30.

Haynes and Harris were arrested after receiving an anonymous tip. The duo were charged for the April 16 burglary of The Money Tree, 1821 Walton Way, the May 4 burglary at Computer Exchange, 3206 Peach Orchard Road, and the May 28 burglary at Computer Exchange, 404 E. Martintown Road, North Augusta, police said.

AC, 1/21/2010 Tiffany Smith , 24, of the 3400 block of Toms Drive, theft by taking; Jan. 5: five years' probation, fined $300 and ordered to pay restitution, perform 100 hours of community service, stay away from Rent-a-Center, reside with parents and abide by household rules and have no contact with co-defendant Gerry Haynes

His prior convictions-
STATE OF GEORGIA - CURRENT SENTENCES
CASE NO: 707434
OFFENSE: BURGLARY
CONVICTION COUNTY: RICHMOND COUNTY
CRIME COMMIT DATE: 04/13/2009
SENTENCE LENGTH: 0 YEARS, 8 MONTHS, 18 DAYS

STATE OF GEORGIA - PRIOR SENTENCES
CASE NO: 392074
OFFENSE: THEFT BY TAKING
CONVICTION COUNTY: RICHMOND COUNTY
CRIME COMMIT DATE: 03/22/2003
SENTENCE LENGTH: 6 YEARS, 0 MONTHS, 0 DAYS

CASE NO: 392074
OFFENSE: obstr of law enf officer
CONVICTION COUNTY: RICHMOND COUNTY
CRIME COMMIT DATE: 02/16/2000
SENTENCE LENGTH: 0 YEARS, 12 MONTHS, 0 DAYS

CASE NO: 392074
OFFENSE: THEFT BY REC STOLEN PROP
CONVICTION COUNTY: RICHMOND COUNTY
CRIME COMMIT DATE: 02/16/2000
SENTENCE LENGTH: 5 YEARS, 0 MONTHS, 0 DAYS

CASE NO: 392074
OFFENSE: ATMPT BURGLARY
CONVICTION COUNTY: RICHMOND COUNTY
CRIME COMMIT DATE: 01/17/1998
SENTENCE LENGTH: 5 YEARS, 0 MONTHS, 0 DAYS

CASE NO: 367623
OFFENSE: obstr of law enf officer
CONVICTION COUNTY: MCDUFFIE COUNTY
CRIME COMMIT DATE: 09/18/1996
SENTENCE LENGTH: 0 YEARS, 12 MONTHS, 0 DAYS

CASE NO: 367623
OFFENSE: THEFT BY REC STOLEN PROP
CONVICTION COUNTY: MCDUFFIE COUNTY
CRIME COMMIT DATE: 09/18/1996
SENTENCE LENGTH: 1 YEARS, 0 MONTHS, 0 DAYS

CASE NO: 392074
OFFENSE: THEFT BY REC STOLEN PROP
CONVICTION COUNTY: MCDUFFIE COUNTY
CRIME COMMIT DATE: 09/18/1996
SENTENCE LENGTH: 5 YEARS, 0 MONTHS, 0 DAYS

disssman
6
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disssman 07/19/10 - 08:30 am
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I thought we were a three

I thought we were a three strikes state?

Labatt
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Labatt 07/19/10 - 11:16 am
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Society doesn't need folks

Society doesn't need folks like this around. 24 plus years already has been given to this fine upstanding citizen. Wonder how much time he will be given have for this most recent "misunderstanding"?

dichotomy
30379
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dichotomy 07/19/10 - 05:30 pm
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Any sane society that cared

Any sane society that cared about it's law abiding, tax paying, citizens would just take this guy out and shoot him. We need a three strikes and your dead law with an express lane to the needle chamber for this kind of habitual scumbag. Can anyone explain to me what redeeming social value this waste of skin has? And just remember old folks, when he DOES get let out of jail again we will give him welfare, food stamps, subsidized housing, and free better medical care than you will be getting from the Obama/Berwick team of Medicare Rationers. Ain't Progressive Soicalism great?

flipa
35
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flipa 07/19/10 - 06:23 pm
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It's actually the suit

It's actually the suit wearing, well trimmed, smooth talking tax users that get elected by paying these scum to sleep all day & steal all night that we need two years of pay refunded back to the treasury from. There is already a law on the books against this kind of fraud. It's called BRIBES.

disssman
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disssman 07/19/10 - 09:26 pm
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Maybe a security camera on

Maybe a security camera on the fence line would have prevented his escape. Or heaven forbid a guard should have walked and looked at the fence every once in a while. Good god there are 95 people working at that location. Surely someone is watching the recreation yard while inmates are out there, aren't they?

cleanup
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cleanup 07/20/10 - 12:36 am
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Our sheriff's department is a

Our sheriff's department is a total joke when it comes to helping citizens with common break-ins, property theft, etc. I hate even to pay for these lazy cops to file a report (that's not police work; that's paperwork) rather than actually do something for the people that pay their salary. If the sheriff's department were abolished, I don't think I would see any difference in crime. I've been a victim enough times to know they really could not care less. I want my money back.

cleanup
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cleanup 07/20/10 - 12:39 am
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Is Strength going to be fired

Is Strength going to be fired for something that caused danger to the community, and is clearly his fault? Nope. He should be, though, for that and a million other reasons under his "watch."

ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts
7054
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ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts 07/20/10 - 06:30 am
0
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"What we have here is a

"What we have here is a failure to communicate!" A guard tower with a guard armed with an automatic rifle with orders shoot to kill will deter this from happening again!

corgimom
27428
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corgimom 07/20/10 - 09:24 am
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Cleanup, convicts escaped

Cleanup, convicts escaped from Alcatraz. Most prisons sooner or later have an escapee. Those prisoners have nothing else to do but think of ways to escape. And no facility, staffed by humans, is perfect 100% of the day, each and every day.

KSL
120945
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KSL 07/20/10 - 09:38 am
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Corgi, which prisoners

Corgi, which prisoners actually are known to have made a successful escape from Alcatraz? Proven?

Just Another Day
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Just Another Day 07/20/10 - 06:15 pm
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There might be 95 employees

There might be 95 employees "working" at this location but only about 15 to 20 in any given shift. I know that they have a guard that walk about the property every hour or so but that doesn't mean that the potential escapee just waits out the guard in between hourly checks. These inmates have all the time in the world to watch and plan for these kinds of things.

I agree there should be cameras or a guard with a weapon inside a tower to discourage these escapes but once again, the powers that be will tell you its not in the allotted budget.

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