Monday, 24 June 2019 18:13

Search continues for Morrison inmates; escape marks at least the 4th this decade

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HOFFMAN — The search continues for two men who escaped Morrison Correctional Institution early Monday morning.


The Richmond County Sheriff’s Office and the prison’s Emergency Response Team are actively searching around northern Richmond County for 18-year-old Josh Ashworth and 22-year-old Brandon McDurmon, according to John Bull, spokesman with the N.C. Department of Public Safety.

Bull said there are also assets contacting family and friends of the escapees and looking into their histories, trying to project where the two might go.

Monday morning’s escape comes several days after Kristie Brayboy was named warden of the facility.

Records with the DPS Division of Adult Correction show there have been six other escapes from North Carolina prisons so far this year.

However, those records do not include at least three previously known escapes from Morrison during this decade.

Last year, Nickolas Statkus was found half-conscious and bleeding in the cab of a pickup for sale just hours after making his break.

He is currently housed at Nash Correctional Institution, after being moved from Central Prison in Raleigh. His projected release date is currently Dec. 1, 2021.

Two inmates also escaped in November of 2014.

Jacob Pilkington and Frankie Noles had been incarcerated in the minimum security unit of the prison when, one night, they climbed out of a window and scaling a fence.

They were located nearly a week later in McDowell County. Pilkington was caught after officers spotted the two under a railroad bridge and Noles was captured the following day in a junkyard, where they had been staying for a few nights, according to a press release at the time.

Both Pilkington and Noles, at the time, had about a year left on their respective sentences.

Records show Noles was last released from prison May 1, 2018.

However, he was convicted in a Burke County misdemeanor larceny case from 2016 by the end of the month and is currently on probation with an 18-month suspended sentence.

Despite the escape, Pilkington was released in October of 2015.

He has since been convicted in Rowan County of misdemeanor larceny (2016) and three counts of assault on a female (2018) and is also on probation with an 18-month suspended sentence on the latter conviction.

Keith Sharod Moore escaped in January of 2011 and was reportedly captured in Moore County after his prison ID was found during a break-in investigation. He was convicted of several counts of breaking and entering and larceny connected with his time on the run.

He was released in 2013 but wound up back behind bars twice in 2014, including following a Caldwell County conviction assault of assault on an officer or state employee.

His record has been clear since his release on Jan. 19, 2015.

State court records show Moore currently has pending traffic infractions in Caldwell County.