Kentucky State Police investigators believe there’s a good chance that the man who escaped from the Henderson County Detention Center Friday night is out of the area now.
“He very well could be out of the area,” said Trooper Corey King, the public information officer for Henderson KSP Post 16. King added that it’s likely the escapee, Tylee Thompson, is in another state.
But he added a word of caution that nothing is for sure until an escapee is apprehended.
King advised residents to continue to remain vigilant, and if someone encounters Thompson, “Don’t confront him.”
The U.S. Marshals Service has joined the investigation, King said.
On Friday night, Thompson, 33, was accompanied by a sergeant and another inmate to take out the garbage at about 9:15 p.m., said Jailer Bruce Todd in a Saturday morning interview with the Hendersonian.
After the inmates emptied their tubs into the Dumpster, they were pushing the wheeled tubs back to the jail when Thompson pushed his into the sergeant, pinning her against the wall, Todd said.
Then Thompson ran away into the direction of the cemetery across the street from the jail on Borax Drive, Todd said.
According to Todd, Thompson was classified in the jail as a trustee in the state’s Substance Abuse Program. SAP provides drug counseling for some inmates who have been arrested on felony drug and/or alcohol charges, a Kentucky Department of Corrections website said.
Thompson, as a trustee, had worked his up and gained trust among the jail staff, allowing him more responsibilities within the jail, Todd said.
“He’s supposed to be trusted to perform these duties,” Todd said.
An initial investigation into his phone calls late Friday night revealed that Thompson had something planned, Todd said, adding that a remark on one recording was that Thompson was “trying to get lucky today.”
Thompson is described as a black male, 5’10”, dreadlocks, short beard, wearing a khaki-colored jail uniform with sandals, and he walks with a limp, according to information posted on the Henderson Police Department’s Facebook page soon after the escape.
Thompson’s charges include criminal possession of a forged instrument (identity), receiving stolen property (firearms), possession of a controlled substance (cocaine), possession of marijuana and fugitive from another state (Ohio), according to the HCDC’s website.
State police have received a couple tips the past few days that Thompson was spotted in Henderson—one saying he was seen in an old, abandoned ambulance, King said. But local law officials found nothing, he said.