One of two escaped inmates recaptured


One of two inmates who escaped from the Santa Clara County Main Jail in San Jose last week was arrested Tuesday, according to the sheriff’s office.

Just before 10 p.m., sheriff’s officials said that 26-year-old Palo Alto resident Laron Campbell had been taken into custody and was being transported back to Santa Clara County.

Santa Clara County sheriff’s officials will hold a press conference about the arrest later this morning at the office’s San Jose headquarters, at 55 West Younger Ave.

Campbell and 33-year-old Rogelio Chavez of San Jose escaped from the Main Jail South facility near West Hedding and North San Pedro streets around 11 p.m. Nov. 23 by cutting through bars to a second-floor window, sheriff’s Sgt. Richard Glennon said.

The two inmates lowered themselves to the ground with bed sheets and clothes. Two other inmates escaped with Chavez and Campbell, but were quickly apprehended.

Investigators didn’t find cutting instruments in the cell or nearby, but found surveillance footage showing the pair outside the perimeter established by deputies, Glennon said.

Campbell was booked into the jail on Feb. 12, 2015 for robbery, false imprisonment, criminal threats and firearms violations, according to Glennon.

Deputies are still searching for Chavez, who is considered dangerous.

At around 11:15 p.m. on Sunday, deputies set up surveillance at a Days Inn motel at 8292 Murray Ave. in Gilroy after receiving tips that Chavez was in or near the motel, but didn’t find him there.

On Tuesday, deputies raided a property on Inman Way in San Jose for Chavez’s associates.

San Jose resident Emily Vaca, 35, was arrested on suspicion of helping Chavez by driving him around the county, Glennon said Tuesday.

Chavez had been at the jail since Aug. 17 for burglary, extortion, false imprisonment, resisting arrest and firearms violations, Glennon said.

He is Hispanic, stands about 6 foot 1 inch tall and weighs about 190 pounds. He has a facial tattoo above and below his left eye, according to Glennon.

On Friday, Sheriff Laurie Smith announced a $20,000 reward for information leading to the inmates’ capture.

Anyone with information about Chavez’s whereabouts has been asked to call sheriff’s investigators at (408) 808-4500 or the anonymous tip line at (408) 808-4431.

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