Police: Teamwork of multiple agencies in Louisiana help thwart escaped inmate’s attempt at freedom

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NATCHITOCHES PARISH, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – The summer vacation of an inmate who escaped from the Natchitoches Parish Detention Center this morning was cut short due to the teamwork and quick actions of local and surrounding law enforcement agencies.

Johnny Martin, 42, a Louisiana Department of Corrections inmate being housed at NPDC, was taken back into custody in the Pineville area, less than three hours after he bolted from the detention center and carjacked a vehicle early Monday.

Martin escaped by breeching a fence in his work area, according to Natchitoches Parish Sheriff’s Major of Corrections Roger Henson.

Martin is serving a 20-year DOC sentence for forcible rape and second-degree kidnapping. NPSO Major of Corrections Roger Henson said Martin escaped by breeching a fence in his work area.

According to the NPSO said, NPDC corrections officers discovered the escape around 5:40 A.M. Monday, and immediately identified Martin and provided information to NATCOM 911 Center for law enforcement BOLO messages and notified the Louisiana DOC of the escape.

A few minutes after the escape, Natchitoches Police responded to a carjacking on the parking lot of a local business near the detention center, in which a blue 2006 Honda CRV bearing an undisclosed license plate number was stolen. Martin was identified as the carjacking suspect through video evidence.

A heavy law enforcement presence of deputies, correctional officers, city police and other agencies began to actively search for Martin.

Martin, who had ties to Ferriday, Rapides and Concordia Parishes, was scheduled for release in 2023 and served as a trustee inside the corrections facility. During the course of the investigation, detectives believed Martin was attempting to travel south and intelligence gathered confirmed that information.

At that point, the NPSO asked for assistance from the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office, Alexandria Police Department, Pineville Police Department, Louisiana State Police and the US Marshal’s Fugitive Apprehension Unit.

Then, just after 8:15 a.m. Monday, law enforcement agencies in Rapides Parish spotted Martin in the Pineville area and, after a brief pursuit captured him the Pineville area.  

There were no injuries.

Martin is being booked into the Rapides Parish Jail but will be transferred back to face additional felony charges of simple escape, carjacking, etc. in Natchitoches Parish.

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