Escaped Inmate still at large

Published 6:33 pm Friday, August 31, 2007

An inmate who escaped from the Pearl River County Jail in Millard on Monday night is still at large, said Maj. Aaron Russell of the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department on Friday.

Russell said Joseph Anthony Lorio, 27, 1238 Rock Ranch Rd., was spotted Wednesday night in the Sones-Chapel Community a little after 7 p.m.

“He was due west of the corner store on Highway 11 (in Millard),” Russell said.

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Russell said deputies were out all Wednesday and Thursday nights searching the area, but had not found Lorio as of Friday morning.

“We had a night-vision helicopter from Jefferson Parish and K-9 units from Lamar County out looking for him all night last (Wednesday) night,” said Russell.

Russell said three more helicopters were brought in Thursday to assist in the search, but were grounded when bad weather moved in Thursday afternoon. The helicopters had not resumed searching as of press time Friday morning.

Russell said in a phone interview Friday morning that the reverse-911 call system would be used sometime Friday to call residents in the Pine Grove, Henleyfield, and Crossroads communities, to let them know that Lorio could possibly on his way through on his way to Louisiana.

“We have no information that he has contacted anyone and no reports of stolen cars, so we believe he is still in the area. We want to warn people to be sure that their vehicles and houses are secure,” Russell said.

Russell said Lorio, who was being held on charges of aggravated and domestic violence, burglary, grand larceny and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, should be considered dangerous because of the nature of the charges, but said he does not know if Lorio has been able to arm himself.

“The only sightings we have of him have been brief glimpses or from a long ways off. We cannot tell at this point if he has obtained a weapon,” Russell said.

Lorio was one of two inmates to escape from the jail Monday night by removing a cinder block from the cell wall and climbing through the hole that was left. The other inmate, Joshua Cole Frierson, was captured Tuesday morning around 10 a.m.

Lorio is five feet seven inches tall, weighs 180 pounds, and has brown hair and green eyes. He has tattoos on both arms, and was last seen wearing a white t-shirt and yellow pants. If anyone has any information leading to Lorio’s whereabouts, they should call the Pearl River County Sheriff’s Department at 601-795-2241 or Crime Stoppers at 601-799-CLUE(2583).