Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Nassau Prisoner Caught after Courthouse Escape

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Nassau Prisoner Caught after Courthouse Escape

Article excerpt

The escape and capture of a prisoner Nassau County deputies

considered an escape risk has led to an internal investigation

into whether the man had a key to his shackles and handcuffs,

Sheriff Ray Geiger said yesterday.

Dijohn Miller, 27, of Jacksonville was at the Nassau County

Courthouse yesterday waiting to appear before Circuit Judge Bill

Parsons when he bolted from a hallway outside the judge's

chambers.

Officers arrested Miller after a five-block chase, Lt. Tommy

Seagraves said. Geiger said a bailiff fired one shot during the

chase, but the bailiff said he fired into the air, not at

Miller. Geiger said no witnesses refuted the bailiff's

statements.

"It's being rumored that he had a handcuff key," Geiger said.

"We had him shackled and handcuffed. He couldn't have gotten out

of there that easy unless he did have a key."

Miller was facing many charges, including robbery, aggravated

assault, battery in a detention facility and obstruction by

disguise. He also is wanted by Georgia authorities on other

charges.

Geiger said part of the problem yesterday was that officers had

to transport 42 inmates to court. But he said there were enough

guards on duty to watch them.

All of the inmates who returned to jail from court were

strip-searched by deputies trying to find the key. Vans that

carry the prisoners also were being searched, as were Miller's

clothes and belongings, the sheriff said.

IN THE COURTS

MURDER CONVICTION: A Jacksonville man was convicted Wednesday

night of first-degree murder, armed robbery and two counts of

kidnapping in a botched drug deal.

Laval O. Carroll, 25, was a participant in a robbery on Jan.

23, 1996, near Palafox Street. The gunman, Chievy Jones, was

convicted last month of firstdegree murder and is serving a life

sentence for the death of Elijah Kelly Smith, said Assistant

State Attorney Mark Borello.

The state didn't seek the death penalty. Carroll will be

sentenced to life in prison March 31.

WIFE-BEATING CONVICTION: A Jacksonville man charged with beating

his wife, threatening her with a handgun and gashing her arm,

leg and head with shards of a broken vase was convicted

yesterday of misdemeanor assault. …

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