Handcuffed fugitive steals police car, allegedly kidnaps woman while on the run
Authorities are searching for an escaped inmate who allegedly kidnapped a woman while on the loose and stole a police vehicle when officers attempted to recapture him.
Police arrested Travis Lee Davis, 30, at a parking lot in Oklahoma, nearly 350 miles away from where he escaped, on Wednesday after a woman reported that he kidnapped her, but he managed to slip away once again, authorities said.
Davis, who escaped from a jail in Pettis County, Missouri, Saturday night, was handcuffed behind his back and inside of a police cruiser, when he slipped into the driver’s seat and sped off with the vehicle, according to the Heavener Police Department.
The officers were standing outside of the car and interviewing the alleged victim, who claimed Davis kidnapped her at gunpoint, when the suspect stole the vehicle and fled the scene, the Heavener Police Department said.
Davis drove the car about 2 miles away from the scene before crashing into a tree and taking off on foot, according to police. Officers said he may have hopped on a nearby train.
Authorities said they set up a 10-square-mile perimeter that they are searching and had reached out to the railroad system for help.
Officers were searching on foot, with dogs, vehicles and circling the perimeter, but there were no signs of the suspect as of late Wednesday.
“It is possible that Davis escaped the area by trespassing on a freight train, however, people in the area should keep their doors locked and be watchful for strangers,” the Heavener Police Department said in a statement Wednesday. “Anyone driving in the area should not pick up any hitch hiker and should definitely report them to the Leflore County Sheriffs Office.”
Davis — who is considered dangerous — was being held on $110,000 bond for various charges, including kidnapping, endangering the welfare of a child, domestic assault, resisting arrest and parole violation, according to court documents.
Missouri authorities believe Davis escaped from the jail at around 9:30 p.m. on Saturday by climbing into the ceiling.
“Davis climbed up into the ceiling of G Pod, across the rafters, through a maintenance access hole in the concrete wall, into a maintenance access closet, which lead to an exterior exit on the S. Lamine side of the jail and fled on foot,” the Pettis County Sheriff’s Department said in a statement, citing interviews with inmates and surveillance footage.
Davis is described as a white male, who is 6 feet tall and weighs 150 pounds with brown hair and blue eyes. He has several tattoos, including an eye inside a triangle on the front of his neck and was last seen wearing a white T-shirt and gray pants.
Police said anyone with information on the escape or the suspect’s whereabouts should contact local law enforcement agency immediately.