Escaped Georgia inmates captured in Tennessee

Cheryl Sanders
June 23, 2017

Investigators shared an image of Rowe and Dubose spreadeagled and shirtless, face-down and handcuffed on a concrete slab, before taking them to the Rutherford County jail.

After some 60 hours on the run, a pair of escaped Georgia inmates wanted for gunning down two correctional officers were caught Thursday night in Tennessee. CORRECTS SOURCE TO GEORGIA DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS IN SIGNOFF- This undated photo released by the Georgia Department of Corrections Tuesday, June 13, 2017, shows inmate Donnie Russell Rowe.

They stumbled out of the woods and ran into a man in his yard armed with an AR-15.

Dubose and Rowe made it about six miles or so before they attempted to steal another vehicle, but its owner spotted them from inside, phoned a neighbor for help and then held the inmates at gunpoint until police arrived.

MORE | What really happened on the Dept. of Corrections bus? .

The massive manhunt began Tuesday morning, after Rowe and Dubose, who were cellmates at Baldwin State Prison, overpowered two correctional officers who were driving a transport bus along Georgia State Route 16 in Putnam County, about 80 miles southeast of Atlanta, according to the Putnam County Sheriff's Office.


The two carjacked a passerby and disappeared in his Honda Civic.

Signs of the fugitives turned up hours later and 25 miles north, in Madison, where they ransacked a house, ditched their prison uniforms, and took food and likely clothes as well.

Over the next few days, there were several reported sightings, from a Family Dollar store in Madison, Ga., (that was later confirmed to be true) to a rest stop in SC (that turned out not to be them), but no concrete idea of where they were - or where they might be headed.

According to Bedford County Sheriff Austin Swing, The fugitives stole a auto in Moore county in the Lynchburg area, but it broke down in Bedford County. Goodwin told News 2 the men surrendered after they were approached.

Then they stole clothing, jewelry and other valuable items from their home, even eating the wife's beef soup.

The fugitives tied them up, and when the man tried to break free, they tied him up tighter, putting socks on his hands so he couldn't loosen his bonds, Swing said.


Shortly after 5 p.m., the pair left in the couple's Jeep Cherokee because the engine of another vehicle didn't start, Swing said.

The sheriff said he's watched the bus video on a cellphone, and couldn't immediately tell which inmate fired the fatal shots. Vehicles were hit, but no people were injured.

The murderers fired their weapons at the police as they tried to speed away, but eventually they crashed the stolen vehicle into the woods and ran toward a nearby home. The interstate was shut down and K-9s were brought out.

It showed the two men tattooed and exhausted, but alive-which may have caught them by surprise.

"They were inside the caged area of the bus", Sills said. They ultimately left the truck in Tennessee and stole a white sedan, which they abandoned near the hostages' home, Swing said.

She says both men were taken into custody in Christiana, Tennessee. "And then who knows what other counties that we don't even know about right now", said Fitzhugh. Both are facing multiple charges in both states.


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