MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Authorities are trying to determine how two inmates escaped custody in Shelby County in a period of less than 24 hours.
Mario Jackson was being held in the Shelby County Jail on aggravated kidnapping, robbery, and burglary charges. He escaped Wednesday night while he was at The MED for treatment.
Authorities said Jackson overpowered two guards after he went to the bathroom. He had already loosened his ankle bracelets.
"When he came out of the bathroom door, he immediately approached the two guards," said Shelby County Sheriff's Department spokesperson Steve Shular. "As they tried to take him back into custody, he broke free from them, went straight down the hall, and right out the door to the ambulance entrance on the first floor."
Hours earlier, Shelby County Corrections Inmate Keshun Douglas escaped from a prison van while he was being transported from the penal farm to The MED.
Shular said officials spent Thursday looking into how the inmates may have escaped.
"Did he somehow get a key that would open up these bracelets? Was it something he did in the bathroom that enabled him to do that, or was there some violation of policy where he wasn't secured properly?" Shular speculated.
Officials have also begun an immediate review of all policies and procedures.
"Should anything be changed in how inmates are moved through the area when they have to go for treatment? Are there any rest rooms they shouldn't go into in the future? Are there any hallways they shouldn't be down in the near future, especially those by an exit door? These are questions we're looking at, and we're hoping to get some answers quickly," Shular said.
Two jail employees have been placed on administrative leave, with pay, pending the outcome of an investigation into the escapes.
If you have information about either escape, you can call Crime Stoppers at (901) 528-CASH.