The hunt for three inmates who escaped from the Merced County Jail continues as the sheriff’s department arrests people accused of aiding in the escape.
Three of the escapees have been apprehended, the Mercy County Sheriff’s Department reported.
The six inmates were discovered missing from their cell from the downtown Merced County Jail just after midnight on Jan. 10. A preliminary investigation has determined that the inmates were able to gain access to the roof of the facility and utilize a homemade rope to scale down the side of the jail, according to the sheriff's department.
The three escapees still being sought are:
· Jorge Barron, 20, of Atwater. He was jailed for a violation of probation. He is 5 feet 5 inches tall, 140 pounds and has black hair and brown eyes.
· Gabriel Francis Coronado, 19, of Atwater. He was in jail for charges of attempted murder, shooting at an inhabited dwelling, participation in a criminal street gang, felon in possession of a firearm, and a violation of probation. He is 5 feet 10 inches tall, 225 pounds and has black hair and brown eyes.
· Manuel Allen Leon, 21, of Vallejo. He was in jail for charges of assault with a firearm, shooting at an inhabited dwelling, evade peace officer, reckless driving, participation in a criminal street gang, and carrying a loaded firearm. He is 5 feet 10 inches tall, 165 pounds with black hair and brown eyes.
On the night of Jan. 12, 22-year-old Fabian Cruz Roman and 21-year-old Andres Nunez Rodriguez, were apprehended without incident in the San Diego area. Roman is currently in custody for murder charges and Rodriguez is in custody for attempted murder charges.
Earlier that same day 22-year-old Edgar Ventura was apprehended without incident in Firebaugh and transported back to the Merced County Sheriff’s Office. He was originally in jail on charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm, participation in a criminal street gang, and violation of probation.
During the investigation of the escape, the Merced County Sheriff’s Office, the United States Marshals Service and the Department of Justice have made several arrests of individuals who in some fashion, aided in their escape.
“Over the past week, investigators have learned that friends and family members of the escapees aided in their escape during and after their incarceration,” the sheriff’s department said on their Facebook page. “Furthermore, as the investigation continues, it has been discovered that several other individuals may have been involved and investigators are looking into other possible conspirators.”
Arrested for aiding in the escape in some fashion are: Sonia Montes, 46, of Merced; Elvira Aleman De Montes, 66, of Atwater; Alexia Hernandez-Ramirez, 20, of Atwater; Arthur Quirarte, 19, of Atwater; Rosario Coronado, 41, of Merced; and Raheem Hill, 28, of Merced.
This is still an on-going investigation. There is a reward of up to $10,000 per escapee being offered by the United States Marshals Service for information leading to the apprehension of the three at-large inmates. These subjects should be considered armed and dangerous. If you see any of the following escapees do not approach them and immediately call 9-1-1.
A tip line has been set up by the US Marshals Service and all information given can remain anonymous and could help bring these criminals to justice. To provide information you can call: 1-877-WANTED-2 (1-877-926-8332) or you can visit the following link: https://www.usmarshals.gov/tips/index.html