Posted: Sep 30, 2012 9:59 PM by Mitch Bryan
Updated: Sep 30, 2012 11:13 PM
CORPUS CHRISTI - An escaped inmate is back behind bars tonight after a manhunt right outside the KRIS and KZTV News studios. Police say 30 year old Joe Hernandez got loose around 9 o'clock Saturday night.
30 year old Joe Hernandez managed to push his way past the guard and roll under that gate just as it slammed shut behind him. And then he ran this way, straight towards the neighborhood.
Hernandez bee-lined it for the houses here on Comanche and Lipan, and he quickly disappeared into the night. But officers didn't give up.
"Actually I was making dinner and all of a sudden I saw lights everywhere. The cops were surrounding this whole area. So naturally, I was a little nosy," said resident, Clifton Perry.
Next door, resident Michelle Hetzel said, "She said hey, somebody escaped! And I was like, what?!"
Perry and Hetzel live right behind the Channel 6 News Station and they couldn't help but come outside and watch.
"From what I could tell, is that they knew exactly where he was, but they couldn't pinpoint him. And it was obvious that they had a manhunt going," Perry said.
Officers and Indy the police dog, combed the entire area for a couple of hours, looking for Hernandez.
Police searched our parking lot, the surrounding houses as well as this bed and breakfast. And for a moment, things looked hopeless, when suddenly, Indy found the trail. Leading officers to the law offices of Michele Jones.
Officers say they must have walked by Hernandez several times while they were looking for him. For a couple of hours, he was crammed up under this lawyer's office, which is good, because he's going to need one.
Police took Hernandez into custody, making sure he was cuffed and secure this time. But residents in the area didn't seem to worried about an escaped inmate, running loose in their neighborhood.
Hetzel said, "I'm not scared. I know how to protect myself, I really do. He wouldn't be walking out, I'll put it that way."
"Go Shawshank," Perry added.
Hernandez will face charges of evading arrest. And, we checked into his criminal background, it appears Hernandez has been in trouble quite a few times before.
In 2005, he was charged with possession of marijuana, but the case was later dismissed.
In 2011 and in May of this year, court records show Hernandez was also charged with possession of marijuana. And in June, he was charged with two counts of criminal mischief. Those cases are still pending in the courts.
Do you have a tip, information about a breaking news story, or a story idea for 6 Investigates? Contact the KRIS 6 News Desk at 361-884-6666 or send us an email.
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