Inmate caught after leaving a work detail

A 23-year-old Ohio County man who escaped from a work detail Tuesday near North Vernon was recaptured less than three hours later, police report.

Christopher D. Gullion of Rising Sun faces a preliminary Level 5 felony charge of escape and misdemeanor charges of theft and resisting law enforcement, according to a news release from the Jennings County Sheriff’s Department.

Gullion was one of 10 in an inmate work release program at St. Anne’s Golf Course on the northeast side of North Vernon, Lt. Mike Mowery said.

At about 2 p.m., officers notified Sheriff Gary Driver that Gullion could not be found.

Officers with the sheriff’s department and jail staff along with North Vernon police officers and Indiana State Police troopers went to the area and secured a perimeter, Mowery said. Sgt. Allen Ritchie and his K-9, Vampir, were called to the area to help with the search.

Once on the scene, Vampir quickly located Gullion’s scent and gave police the direction he had traveled after leaving the work detail, Mowery said.

At 4:45 p.m., Driver and Sgt. Jim Blevins found Gullion walking west on the railroad tracks behind a factory on Buckeye Street on the east side of North Vernon, Mowery said.

Police ordered Gullion to stop, but he ran south across Buckeye Street and into a field, Mowery said.

Officers involved with the search set up another perimeter to keep Gullion contained to that area. He then crossed a shallow part of the Muscatatuck River, where he was taken into custody by Reserve Deputy Doug Brown.

Gullion later told police that after he escaped from the inmate work release program, he had found a change of clothes in a garage and disposed of his black-and-white-striped jail uniform and orange ball cap.

The sheriff’s department is asking the public to contact the dispatch center at 812-346-4911 if they find the missing jail uniform and/or orange ball cap.

Gullion was being held on $5,218.70 bond on Wednesday morning, pending his initial court hearing in Jennings Circuit Court.