Two men who had been released while serving life prison sentences in Florida were captured early Saturday night in the Panhandle area, around 80 miles west of the prison they had been held at. Gretl Plessinger, Florida Department of Law Enforcement spokesperson says 34-year old Charles Walker and 34-year old Joseph Jenkins were located and apprehended without incident at the Coconut Grove Motor Inn in Panama City. The two men had been serving sentences at the Franklin Correctional Institution in Carrabelle, east of Apalachicola. Agencies involved in the arrests include the FDLE, U.S. Marshall’s Service, the Bay County Sheriff’s Office and the Panama City Police Department.
The FDLE says Walker had been serving a life sentence without parole on a second degree murder conviction from Orange County, and Jenkins had been serving a life sentence without parole on a first degree murder conviction from Orange County, when they were separately released, “…after the Department of Corrections received fraudulent release documents from the Clerk of Court.”
Changes made to release procedures
On Friday, Florida Department of Corrections Secretary Michael D. Crews said the DOC would start requiring verification of releases by the sentencing judge, if an order for release would “…[result] in the early release of an inmate from Department custody.” Secretary Crews, in a press release, also said that the DOC, “…will not release the inmate or take any other action in regards to the [early release] Order until this verification is received.”
Click here to visit the Florida Department of Corrections website.
Click here to visit the FDLE website.
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