XENIA — An inmate who escaped from the Greene County Jail this morning around 9 a.m. has been captured.
David Suarez, 33, was in the outdoor recreation area on the roof of the jail when he allegedly pulled up the bottom of the fence, broke its heavy-duty straps, crawled under the fencing and ran down the fire escape, according to Greene County Sheriff Gene Fischer. He left his shirt, and possibly his pants, near the fence. Police said Suarez took off running south of the building, stole a bike, and headed north on the bike path.
Coroner’s Office investigators spotted Suarez close to McDonalds on North Detroit Street. Sheriff’s deputies, Ohio State Highway Patrol, Xenia Police Department and Greene County Parks & Trails rangers searched for the man and took him into custody a little after 10 a.m.
Jail records say Suarez is charged with 17 drugs charges, mostly possession of drugs or trafficking in drugs. He’s also charged with obstructing official business, two counts of tampering with evidence and two counts of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity. All but one are felonies.
“If this guy is going to take a chance to get out of jail, take off running for freedom, then we have to consider that a threat. What else will he do if he’s out?” Fischer said. “All in all the turn around time was pretty quick getting him back into custody and we want to thank everybody involved. He’s back where he’s supposed to be.”
Fischer said additional charges will be filed because of the escape. He also said after looking at video surveillance, he believes other inmates were involved who used distraction techniques. He said they may be charged as well.
Fischer said the recreation area will be shut down temporarily.
“We have to come up with a better solution now that that has been compromised. I’ll spend some time today with the head of maintenance from the county and see what we can do. We may have to cable that instead of using the straps,” he said.
Fischer said the escape is an example of why a new jail is needed to replace the 50-year-old facility. The jail may be a few years away from construction but planning is underway.
Inmate Bryan Goney escaped from the jail in July 2017, falling from a third-story isolation cell window. Fischer remembered only one other escape in his time as sheriff.
Suarez is currently being held on a $600,000 bond.
Contact Anna Bolton at 937-502-4498 or follow @annadbolton on Facebook.