Residents can relax after escaped inmates caught in Tennessee - CBS46 News

Residents can relax after escaped inmates caught in Tennessee

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Source: WGCL Source: WGCL
Source: Elbert Co Sheriff's Office/Georgia Department of Corrections Source: Elbert Co Sheriff's Office/Georgia Department of Corrections
42 year-old Christopher Monica 42 year-old Christopher Monica

Residents in the area where two escaped inmates allegedly shot and killed two corrections officers in Putnam County on Tuesday can breathe a little easier now that both are in police custody.

The inmates were being transported by bus from Baldwin State Prison to another facility when they were able to get through a locked gate and overpower two officers, one of whom was driving the transport bus. They disarmed one of the officers and fatally shot both, officials said. 

Both suspects then carjacked a Honda Civic and fled the scene. The incident occurred on Highway 16, which goes east-west through the center of Putnam County. The area is about 75 miles southeast of Atlanta.

The two escaped inmates are identified as 43 year-old Donnie Russell Rowe and 24 year-old Ricky DuBose. They were initially driving the green Honda Civic with the Georgia license tag of RBJ6601. After dumping that vehicle, the inmates stole a white 2008 Ford F-250 with the Georgia license tag of BCX5372. The vehicle was stolen in Morgan County in the area of Seven Islands Road.

The pair eventually made their way to Tennessee where they were taken into custody.

The victims have been identified as 42 year-old Christopher Monica and 58 year-old Curtis Billue. Monica had worked for the facility for nearly eight years after being hired in October of 2009. Billue was nearing his 10th anniversary with the facility after being hired in July of 2007.

CBS46 has been informed about a GoFundMe page that has been started for the family of officer Chris Monica. Click here to access it. We will update this story to include a fundraiser page for officer Curtis Billue if one becomes available.

Tuesday night, after receiving a tip, Georgia State Patrol troopers spent the evening looking through every wooded area and vacant building in the neighborhood around a Dollar General location in Madison.

The driver of a Tostitos truck called them there, believing he saw the wanted pair outside. When the police helicopter began hovering overhead, bystanders knew a frenzy of activity was sure to follow.

But in the end, Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills says the sighting was probably a false alarm.

"No, we have not confirmed they were in that store," said Sills.

The inmates then broke into a home in Madison to change clothes. Morgan County Sheriff's Office deputies, who found a prison uniform inside the home, believe the invasion happened sometime around 10 a.m. 

CBS46 talked with Devante Cox, a family friend of the homeowners and he says thankfully no one was there when the escaped inmates forced their way in.

"I do believe they probably just saw some clothes. They probably didn't mind what it was as long as they got out the regular clothes they had," said Cox. 

Stay with CBS46 News for updates.

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