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Jailers unaware of escape risk before request for furlough

Administrators call for better communication
Posted at 5:59 PM, Jul 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-07-27 18:33:19-04

Administrators at Lorain County Jail said no one warned them Robert Beane was an escape risk when the 27-year-old was booked on kidnapping, aggravated robbery, felonious assault and weapons charges. Seven days later, after four trips to the emergency room, investigators requested and received a medical furlough for Beane.

But instead of staying in the hospital where he'd been admitted, deputies said Beane walked away and didn't return to jail.  He was captured this week after police said he beat the mother of his child and took the 10-month-old, triggering an Amber Alert.

RELATED: AMBER Alert suspect in custody, infant found safe

"The way we appeared to look at it, this guy was in bad shape," said Lt. James Gordon of the Lorain County Sheriff's Office. "He wasn't capable of doing anything." 

That assumption proved wrong.  Two hours after a judge approved the furlough request, workers at the Elyria hospital where Beane was admitted discovered him missing.

"They found pillows covered-up by a blanket in the bed," said Gordon.

Instead of returning to jail, investigators said Beane hit the streets.

Gordon said that had jailers known Beane might be flight risk, there's no way they would have requested the furlough.  No one warned the jail or made anyone aware Beane had been convicted of resisting arrest and failing to comply with police in the past, Gordon said.

He also said two other police departments that had placed holds on Beane didn't want to take him into custody while he was hospitalized.

"From what I understand, it was a dire medical condition, so we didn't know if he was going to be in there a week, a month, two months or longer," said Gordon.  "So for precaution's sake, we did the furlough."

That meant taxpayers wouldn't have to cover Beane's medical bills while he was out-of-custody.  Jailers said in his first seven days, Beane already accumulated $25,081 in bills from four trips to the emergency room.