State police catch two escapees from Greene County Prison
A Daisytown man awaiting trial on homicide charges and another inmate with a record for escape made a short-lived dash to freedom from the Greene County Prison on Saturday afternoon.
State police caught the pair about two hours later nearly a quarter mile away by the Emerald Mine portal along Garards Fort Road after a short manhunt involving several local police departments, a police helicopter and dogs.
Prison Warden Harry Gillispie said staff spotted Jason Roe, 33, and Rocco I. Iacovone, 27, of Glendale, Ariz., running from the prison and immediately placed the facility on lockdown. An emergency headcount of prisoners showed that only the two men had fled.
Neither Roe nor Iacovone was armed, and no inmates or staff were injured, Gillispie said.
Authorities brought Roe and Iacovone to the state police barracks in Waynesburg for questioning.
“The ultimate goal was achieved,” Gillispie said, “to get them back, and no one gets hurt.”
The escape from the jail housing 104 prisoners occurred at 12:40 p.m.
Trooper Barton Lemansky said investigators focused first on capturing the men, then spent Saturday evening trying to determine how they got out of the jail.
Lemansky said a state trooper in a helicopter spotted the two men in the woods shortly before 2:30 p.m. After a short chase, both men surrendered peacefully, Lemansky said.
They wore prison clothing and prison shoes, Lemansky said, and did not have weapons or cell phones.
State police charged both men with escape and took them back to the Greene County Prison after they were unable to post $100,000 cash bond set by District Judge Lee Watson.
Roe and his wife, Lana Kay Roe, 40, have been inmates at the jail for nearly a year, awaiting trial for the Aug. 14, 2012, shooting death of Cordele E. Patterson, 38.
Initially, police charged Jason Roe with killing Patterson and wounding his wife at a secluded cabin off Strawn Hill Road in Greene County near the village of Spraggs. Police said Lana Roe suffered a minor gunshot wound to the head, struck by a few pellets from a shotgun shell.
Nearly 10 days later, police charged Lana Roe with homicide. A criminal complaint said that she told investigators that she and her husband bought the shotgun used to kill Patterson on the day of the shooting. She also said that she lured Patterson outside, where Jason Roe shot at him and his wife.
Lana Roe, who remained in the prison on Saturday, was not involved in the escape, Gillispie said.
Iacovone has been in the prison since February on charges of fleeing and eluding police, Gillispie said. Court records showed he had pleaded guilty in Greene County Court on May 8 and was awaiting sentencing.
Court officials had also filed two detainers against Iacovone, Gillispie said, one from Monongalia County, W.Va., for armed robbery charges and another robbery charge in Washington County.
Fox did not address the specifics of the escape in her statement, but thanked state police and local law enforcement agencies for their swift response. She could not be reached for additional comment.
Gillispie said the last escape from the jail, built in 1980, was in 1996. He said the prison underwent renovations in 2000 and 2006.
Bill Vidonic is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-5621 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Google grants teachers’ school supply wishes
- 2 suspects charged with second robbery
- Global heat records tumble once again
- Crosby, Malkin to miss start of Penguins camp
- Red tide threatens Florida economy
- Central Fellowship Church, Connellsville, pastor retires after 31 years
- Positive economic news pushes Dow, S&P 500 to record levels
- Range Resources to pay $4.15M fine, close old gas drilling impoundments
- Porterfield: County Line Church planning spaghetti dinner
- Another woman accuses man of grabbing her shorts on river trail
- Steelers defense a long way from ‘greatest of all time’