MERCED, Calif. (KSEE) – Six inmates are still on the loose after they escaped from the Merced County Jail on Saturday night. The county Sheriff’s Office is now working with several agencies at the local, state and federal level to try to arrest them.
The U.S. Marshals Service is offering an award of up to $5,000 per inmate for any information that leads to their arrests. That tip line is 1-877-WANTED-2 (1-877-926-8332) or you can visit the website https://www.usmarshals.gov/tips/index.html.
The Merced County Sherriff’s Office says the inmates should be considered armed and dangerous.
County Sheriff Vern Warnke said at approximately 11:30 p.m. on Saturday night, the six inmates gained access to the roof and climbed down the 20-foot wall using a rope made of bed sheets. They came down onto the alleyway and then escaped.
“I’m not very happy about the timeline,” Warnke said.
He said officers didn’t discover they were missing until around 8 a.m. on Sunday morning, about 8 hours after they had escaped.
“We’re going to be in the middle of an administrative investigation to find out how this went down and if any of the protocols were violated,” Warnke said. “We do have officers walking up and down the cell blocks but we are no longer allowed to wake them up because they deemed it necessary to have a whole night’s sleep.”
The Sheriff’s Office is now working with several agencies including the U.S. Marshals Service, Homeland Security and the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) Special Services Unit.
“I was just kind of in shock,” said Crystal Pérez, a nursing student at Merced College. “Hopefully they can tighten up their security because that’s kind of scary.”
Warnke said if someone in the community sees any of the escapees, they should not approach them but instead should call the County Sheriff’s Office.
He said they have information on where they could possible be headed and he doesn’t believe they stuck together.
The inmates were in the gang housing unit, Warnke said.
Their age and what they were in jail for are as follows:
Jorge Barrón, 20, a Hispanic male adult, 5’05” 140lbs, black hair, and brown eyes, from Atwater. Barron’s current charges are a violation of probation.
Gabriel Francis Coronado, 19, Hispanic male adult, 5’10”, 225lbs, black hair, brown eyes, from Atwater. Current charges include attempted murder, shooting at an inhabited dwelling, participation in a criminal street gang, felon in possession of a firearm, and violation of probation.
Manuel Allen Leon, 21, Hispanic male adult, 5’10” 165lbs, black hair, brown eyes, from Vallejo. Leon’s charges include assault with a firearm, shooting at an inhabited dwelling, evade peace officer – reckless driving, participation in a criminal street gang, and carrying a loaded firearm.
Andrés Nunez Rodríguez Jr, 21, Hispanic male adult, 5’07”, 145lbs, black hair, brown eyes, from Planada. Rodriguez’s Current Charges are attempted murder, shooting at an inhabited dwelling, participation in a criminal street gang, and felon in possession of a firearm.
Fabián Cruz Román, 22, Hispanic male adult, 5’06”, 145lbs, black hair, brown eyes, from Los Banos. Roman’s current charges are murder.
Eduardo Edgar Ventura, 22, Hispanic male adult, 5’11”, 129lbs, black hair, brown eyes from Portland, Oregon. Current Charges is felon in possession of a firearm, participation in a criminal street gang, and violation of probation.