PALATKA, Fla.— Two escaped jail inmates were charged with murder during an emergency hearing hours after they were captured as part of a dayslong manhunt spanning several states, including Kentucky, authorities said Sunday.
The Putnam County, Fla., Sheriff's Office wanted to send Doni Ray Brown, 23, and Timothy Wayne Fletcher, 25, out of the area immediately after their Saturday arrest.
The two made a first appearance late Saturday before Seventh Circuit Judge Edward E. Hedstrom, Lt. Johnny Greenwood said.
They were ordered moved to the St. Johns County Jail in St. Augustine, Fla., according to the Florida Times-Union in Jacksonville.
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The men had been missing since escaping the Putnam County Jail early Wednesday.
Within hours, authorities say, they had stolen two vehicles and killed Fletcher's 66-year-old step-grandmother, Helen Googe, who owned one of the cars.
Greenwood said the men, alleged accomplices on a previous armed robbery, had been accidentally placed in the same cell because of a jail records mistake.
The cellmates escaped by ripping out a sink and toilet combination from the wall with a jack Fletcher apparently stole from a county van during a previous court appearance.
They crawled through the hole in the wall, dug under a fence and got through a second barrier.
Googe's car was later recovered in Monroe County, Ky., near the Tennessee border. Authorities think the two then stole another car, a red Oldsmobile Alero, and were headed toward Indiana.
Instead, they apparently headed back to Florida in a car reported stolen in Tennessee. Police do not yet know why they decided to head back to Putnam County, where they ran the risk of being easily recognized, the newspaper reported.
Fletcher and Brown have violent pasts, according to the Times-Union.
Brown, whose last known address was in Satsuma, Fla., was arrested Aug. 17 on an armed robbery charge. Fletcher, of Welaka, Fla., was charged March 3 on three counts of failure to appear in court on an aggravated assault charge.