Hopkins County officials: Report any suspicious activity immedia - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

Hopkins County officials: Report any suspicious activity immediately

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John Marlin King (Source: Hopkins County Jail) John Marlin King (Source: Hopkins County Jail)
Brian Allen Tucker (Source: Hopkins County Jail) Brian Allen Tucker (Source: Hopkins County Jail)
Recent photo of Brian Tucker Recent photo of Brian Tucker
Tattoo on the back on Tucker's head. Tattoo on the back on Tucker's head.

The search for two inmates who escaped from the Hopkins County Jail rolls on into Wednesday night after the Hopkins County Sheriff's Office says the men escaped on Tuesday. Both are career criminals, considered dangerous, and may be armed.

According to the Hopkins County Sheriff's Department, Brian Allen Tucker, 45, and John Marlin King, 39, escaped from the jail on Tuesday morning. Tucker was awaiting trial for capital murder, King had been indicted for evading arrest. The men were in a recreation yard when they manage to escape. The sheriff's office has surveillance video that captured the escape, but are holding onto it as evidence.

"It is our knowledge that they were on the rec yard, the female rec yard, when they were able to manipulate the fencing and were able to squeeze through there and they headed east," said Sergeant Brad Cummings with the Hopkins County Sheriff's Department.

The state inspected the jail last September. According to their report, the jail has no deficiencies.

There were no reports of break-ins or burglaries overnight on Tuesday that might have given law enforcement concrete clues of where these two have been. Hopkins County Sheriff's Office Sergeant Brad Cummings says it's possible and logical to assume they've had help by this point. He says anyone who is helping the men will be charged with felony aiding and abetting.

"The longer the search goes, the less likely we'll get them as quick as we'd like," said Cummings. "The longer they're out there, the longer the public is subject to dangerous fugitives."

Tucker is described as 5'7", 171 pounds with brown hair and brown eyes. He previously had a light mustache and goatee, but is now clean-shaven, according to Hopkins County Judge Chris Brown, and has shorter hair. He also has a tattoo around his neck, like barbed wire.  He also has a tattoo on the back of his head that says "Drop Dead."

King is 5'8", 165 pounds with black hair and hazel eyes. He also had a light mustache and goatee, but is now clean-shaven and has shorter hair. Their prison black and whites were found on a railroad track near the jail. 

Tucker was charged with capital murder in the death of 62-year-old Bobby Riley of Hopkins County, which is punishable by the death penalty. Authorities say Riley was strangled with a shoestring. It was also determined that guitars, guns and other items were stolen from his residence. 

Cummings urges residents to stay in their homes, close their blinds and not to go outside until further notice.

"You never know what's going through these guys' minds," said Sergeant Cummings. "They may be looking for some house to break into to get clothes, or they may be trying to find cars or car keys or something like that."

Law enforcement officials have brought in K9 units and officers on horseback to search for the men.

"I know that our law enforcement in Hopkins County and even further beyond our boundaries are working as hard as they can to bring these guys into custody and I have full confidence that they will get that accomplished," said Will Ramsay, the Hopkins County district attorney.

King has an extensive arrest history dating back to 1990, including arrests for burglary of a motor vehicle, assault and unlawful carry of a weapon. Tucker's arrest history goes back to 1987, including four DUIs, simple assault and burglary.  

Both men have addresses linking them to Hopkins County. Investigators will be following up with the inmates' friends and family today. 

"You never know what's going through these guys' minds. They may be looking for some house to break in to get clothes or they may be trying to find cars or car keys or something like that," Sergeant Cummings said.

Hopkins County residents said they are being more cautious at home, but are continuing their daily routine.

"You know, we definitely want them to catch the guys, but you know, life has to go on," said Alexandra Dillon, the owner of the Plain and Fancy Sandwich Shoppe. "We can't just stop everything we are doing. So, you know, you do what you got to do and be safe."

Law enforcement officials say residents living near open pastures or wooded areas should report anything suspicious, especially discarded clothing or clues that indicate someone has been using survival skills in the woods. Officials say they'd rather investigate many false alarms than let the one tip that could make a break in the case slip through the cracks.

If you see either of the fugitives, you should not approach them, but call 911. Anyone with tips, clues or anonymous tips should call Lake Country Crime Stoppers at 903-885-2020. A $5,000 reward is being offered for information leading to the arrest of both suspects.

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