Franklin County escapee recaptured after a month on the run

Franklin County escapee recaptured after a month on the run
Richie Landers (Source: Franklin County Sheriff's Office)

FRANKLIN COUNTY, AL (WAFF) - The second escapee from the Feb. 22 breakout from the Franklin County Jail is back in custody.

Authorities say Richie Landers was captured at approximately 4:30 p.m. Friday on Alabama 20 in Colbert County near the town of Leighton. The capture was made by the U.S. Marshal Service Gulf Coast Regional Fugitive Task force along with investigators from the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office, Colbert County Drug Task Force, and Colbert County Sheriff’s Office.

Landers was reportedly taken into custody with his wife, Crystal Trail, after a brief struggle. They were both taken to the Franklin County Jail without further incident.

Trail was out on bond after being charged for first-degree hindering prosecution relating to the escape. She was charged with an additional count of first-degree hindering prosecution. Investigators say they have notified the Franklin County District Attorney’s Office and will be filing to have the original bond revoked.

The other man who escaped with Landers, Andy Hanson, was captured in Mississippi shortly after the escape.

Multiple arrest have been made in connection with the escape over the past few weeks with individuals allegedly involved in assisting and supporting Landers in his escape. Other suspects include:

  • Jimmie Stearns of Hackleburg - first-degree hindering prosecution
  • Joshua Thornton of Russellville – first-degree facilitating escape
  • Martha Thornton of Russellville – first-degree hindering prosecution

The arrested individuals were apprehended by the United States Marshal Service Gulf Coast Regional Fugitive Task Force, as well as investigators with the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office and Marion County Sheriff’s Office.

The investigation into Landers’ escape continues by the U.S. Marshal Service and the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office.

Investigators say more arrests are expected.

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