Ray County Jail escapee is in custody, will face charges for attack on correctional officer

Published: Apr. 7, 2023 at 3:59 PM CDT
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CLAY COUNTY, Mo. (KCTV) - A man who escaped the Ray County Jail is back in custody in Missouri to face felony charges filed against him following an attack on a correctional officer. Justin Robinson and another inmate are accused of assaulting a correctional officer to escape on March 27.

Investigators said that -- with the help of community members calling to report information to officers from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Kansas City -- the Ray County Sheriff’s Office, the U.S. Marshals Service, the Clay County Sheriff’s Office worked together to apprehend Robinson.

He is being held without bond pending trial.

According to investigators, Robinson was arrested on April 3 at a bus station in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He was wearing a neck brace to cover up his “816″ neck tattoo. Ray County Sheriff Scott Childers said Robinson had new clothes, a new cell phone and a ticket to travel to Texas at the time of his arrest.

On Friday, Childers helped transport Robinson to the Clay County Detention Center.

“He looked down and read my name and I said, ‘It’s me.’ I think he was shocked that I would be there,” Childers said. “This was designed to prove a point. Not just to him but everyone out there, including those that harbored him.”

Robinson and inmate Liam Olinger are both charged with escape from confinement, using a deadly weapon, and second-degree assault of a special victim. Investigators said they worked together to attack a correctional officer with a “shank” that they made by pulling pieces of tin metal from a damaged wall inside of the jail.

“A big relief. One thing we really worried about was someone else being hurt,” Childers said. “Any citizen being hurt, but also the danger law enforcement when they met him. We really thought -- with his statements that he made, that we had collected from others -- that it could turn into being a standoff with deadly consequences. We’re happy that he was taken into custody without incident.”

The correctional officer who was stabbed approximately 12 times is recovering from cuts and lacerations. Childers said the shank was made of such poor material that it kept bending, which likely prevented much more serious injuries.

Ray County escaped inmate extradited back to Missouri

WATCH LIVE: The Ray County sheriff speaks after the escaped Ray County inmate has been placed back in custody. STORY: https://www.kctv5.com/2023/04/03/escaped-ray-county-inmate-justin-robinson-arrested-tulsa/

Posted by KCTV5 News Kansas City on Friday, April 7, 2023

Clay County Sheriff’s Office Public Relations Manager Sarah Boyd said that Robinson will be placed in administrative segregation while in custody.

“That’s an area of the jail where inmates with a particular history of violence against staff or violence against other inmates are housed,” Boyd said. “They are kept on lockdown most of the day and monitored closely.”

Federal, state and local law enforcement agencies are investigating who may have helped Robinson while he was a fugitive. Additional federal charges are possible.

“I really want to credit everyone who not only watched the news, but called into the Tip Line,” Homeland Security Investigations Special Agent in Charge Taekuk Cho said. “We all collaborated, and this is what we need to do when it comes to apprehending dangerous fugitives like this. If anything, it brings a sense of calm.”

Olinger is also being held without bond pending trial. He is in custody at the Platte County Detention Center.

The HSI investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information can contact the HSI Tip Line by calling 866-347-2423.