WATCH: Teen Attempts To Escape Custody, Injures Both Legs After Jumping Onto Will Rogers Tarmac
OKLAHOMA CITY - New video, released by Will Rogers Airport, shows the moment a teenage inmate attempted to escape custody.
The unnamed juvenile deboarded his flight, and then jumped onto the tarmac on Monday.
Officers said he did have minor injuries.
The teen was wanted for a burglary charge out of Cleveland County, though no jurisdiction has been named as to where the original crime occurred.
There were many questions surrounding the case and capture of the suspect, so News 9 spent the day trying to find out why and how this happened.
The first fact of the investigation is that the teen was caught in Texas and was sent back to Oklahoma.
Due to the location and distance, multiple law enforcement departments, and at least one Oklahoma state agency, were involved.
Staff with the Oklahoma City Police Department explained, the incident is a reflection of many miscommunications. They said their department function as airport security, and broke protocol the day of the attempted escape.
However, they said they were depending on critical information from other agencies.
OCPD reports they were under the impression the teenager would be escorted to Oklahoma and shackled when he arrived.
When the suspect landed, he was alone and was able to make a break for it.
According to the Oklahoma Office of Juvenile Affairs (OJA), the suspect signed extradition papers in Texas, and was not deemed a threat to himself or the public by a separate unnamed agency.
OJA said the teen was not in their custody, they simple bought his ticket for transport.
Officers with OCPD said they were not made aware of those transport details.
It’s also important to note, a deputy with Cleveland County was also waiting at the airport for the teen to arrive.
The teen was to be booked at a juvenile facility in Norman, and while it was not the sheriff’s office case, they are charged with transporting inmates who have ties to the area.
OCPD confirmed that an officer told the Cleveland County deputy to wait in their vehicle, and that was not within standard protocol.
There were some other items discussed at a meeting Thursday, November 21, by OCPD to ensure practices in the future.
OCPD issued this statement in full after that meeting:
“This was a unique situation in that unfortunately neither our Agency nor Cleveland County were provided with all of the necessary information. It was our understanding (based off of information received) that the suspect was handcuffed and being escorted by a law enforcement official from Houston on this flight. We did not have any law enforcement at the gate in OKC waiting for this prisoner as we believed he was being escorted. However, we realize an officer should have been waiting at the gate and this issue is being addressed for future transports. It is important to note that having an officer at the gate would not have prevented this particular incident. The portion of the incident regarding where the Deputy was told to wait is still under investigation, but regardless the appropriate protocol does not appear to have been followed on our end. The Deputy should have been escorted to the terminal. We have been in close communication with the Cleveland County Sheriff to review the incident since this incident occurred. Based off of this review we will take appropriate action regarding future transports into OKC.” – SGT. Megan Morgan of the Oklahoma City Police Department.
As added information, the Office of Juvenile Affairs is asked two to three times a month by law enforcement agencies to make travel arrangements involving juveniles, either by ground or air transport.
Officers call this a unique case.
The incident is still under investigation and likely will be in the coming days.