CLEVELAND — An apparent mix-up at the Cuyahoga County Jail resulted in the mistaken release of a 22-year-old man charged with murder for an April 2021 shooting in Cleveland.
Police are now searching for Cornell Gray. He was wanted for the April 17, 2021 murder of a 28-year-old man who was found with multiple gunshot wounds outside a home on Anita Kennedy Road in Cleveland. A warrant was issued for Gray’s arrest in September 2021, and he was captured in Texas by the U.S. Marshals’ Gulf Coast Task Force in February.
Cuyahoga County Jail records show that when Gray was brought back to Cleveland last month, he wasn't booked on that murder charge. Instead, he was booked on March 15 on an unrelated case for carrying concealed weapons.
Court records show Gray appeared before a judge on that weapons case, pleaded not guilty and was given a personal bond on March 18. Jail records show Gray was released later that day without appearing before a judge on the murder charge.
It is not yet clear what led to Gray’s release.
Cuyahoga County Sheriff Christopher Viland released this statement when asked for details on how Gray was released: “We are working with our law enforcement partners to ensure the community's safety. We understand the seriousness of what is being reported and are investigating all of the facts and circumstances. We will ensure our processes are correct and our employees accountable."
A sheriff's spokesperson said any discipline will depend on what the department determines happened in this case. In the past, jailers have been suspended in connection with mistaken releases.
News 5 Investigator Scott Noll found that this is at least the 10th time someone was mistakenly released from jail in just the last three years.
If you've seen Gray or know his whereabouts, you are asked to contact police immediately or call the U.S. Marshals Service at 1-866-4Wanted.
The U.S. Marshals Service said reward money is available. Tips can be anonymous.
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