Athens — A Georgia jail escapee who was being sought by authorities in Henderson County on Saturday is thought to have left the area in a stolen vehicle, Henderson County Sheriff Ray Nutt said. His accomplice is jailed in Navarro County.
Chad Everett Dasher, 38, was held in Tatnall County, Ga., until he escaped through the jail roof, along with 39-year-old Raymond Thomas Smith, on Jan. 24.
Authorities sought the pair until members of the U.S. Marshal’s Joint East Texas Task Force apprehended Smith in Corsicana on Friday. Navarro County Sheriff Elmer Tanner said the suspect remained in custody in Corsicana on Tuesday afternoon.
After that, the focus shifted to finding Dasher.
“We believe at about 2 a.m., Sunday morning, he stole a vehicle and left the area,” Nutt said. “It was a 1999 model suburban.”
The SUV belongs to Wylie Pirkle, who lives on County Road 4325, which connects with Farm-to-Market 607 at the New York Community.
Pirkle told Channel 7 News on Sunday that he had locked the doors to his home Saturday night, and went to sleep with a gun across his lap. At about 2 a.m., Pirkle thought he heard the sound of someone starting a car engine.
“The next morning, I went up to the other house, to the guest house, and I’ve got a suburban up there, and it was gone,” Pirkle told the reporter. “The sheriff’s department did a great job of notifying everybody, but it really doesn’t solve that feeling inside that all this was so close, that some horrible things could have happened.”
According to news reports, Nutt said his department was concerned that Dasher might be in the area when a pickup truck, stolen in Anderson County, was found abandoned on FM 607 South, near Brownsboro.
The Henderson County Sheriff’s Office, along with the U.S. Marshal and DPS, began searching the area Friday afternoon. Nutt said DPS helicopters, Texas Department of Corrections dogs, Henderson County constables and police from Athens and Brownsboro assisted in the search.
Citizens were alerted in a section of Henderson County that Dasher might be in the area.
“We pick a point, and go five miles from it for the alert,” Nutt said. “In this case, it was New York.”
Dasher has a long list of offenses on his sheet, and has several stolen vehicles on his record. A 2012 Savanna, Ga. news report said Dasher had been wanted by several law enforcement agencies when he was arrested in Florida.
Dasher, the report said, was accused of stealing cars, and running off with them, and then doing the same thing in another town.
Dasher was captured in Florida while sleeping in a vehicle he had stolen somewhere else. The U.S. Marshal’s Service is offering dual $2,500 rewards for information that leads to Dasher’s arrest.
Dasher is a white male, 5-feet, 9-inches tall and 140 pounds. He has green eyes and brown hair.
Dasher has an extensive criminal history, including arrests for burglary, firearms, fraud, narcotics, resisting arrests and traffic offenses. He has a history of fleeing from law enforcement.
If you have any information about Dasher, you can contact the U.S. Marshal’s Service Communications Center at 1-800-336-0102. Tips can also be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. All information is confidential.