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Escapee surrenders after day on run
Jose Mendoza.jpg
Jose Mendoza

A man who sprinted from a work detail Thursday strolled back into custody Friday.

Jose Enrique Mendoza, 26, walked into the Warren County Sheriff’s Department at approximately 11 a.m. on Friday to turn himself in. Mendoza was working as a jail trusty on Thursday at Warren County Sanitation Department when he reportedly ran away from the guard at 12:30 p.m. 

Mendoza was being held on a charge of violation of probation, with the original charge of theft of property in 2016. A charge of escape was added Friday and he’s being held without bond. 

The reason given for the escape was simple, as was Mendoza’s decision to return to jail.

“He said he was stupid,” said Warren County Sheriff’s Department chief deputy Bo Ramsey. “He then realized it was best to turn himself in.”

Along with sheriff’s deputies, McMinnville Police Department and Tennessee Highway Patrol officers saturated the area and searched for the inmate for several hours after he ran away. While they searched, Mendoza admitted to lying low and not going far.

“He was out in the woods until dark and then went to a friend’s house,” said Warren County Sheriff’s Major Jason Walker, ending speculation that Mendoza might have had a car waiting for him to transport him out of the immediate area.

General Session Judge Bill Locke will decide how much additional time Mendoza should serve for his 22 hours, 30 minutes of freedom.