Early Monday morning, the Merced County Sheriff’s Department reported an inmate had escaped from the John Latorraca Correctional Center near El Nido. Sheriff’s spokesman Deputy Delray Shelton identified said inmate as 29-year-old Juan Gabriel Ruvalcaba Medina, who’d been discovered missing by correctional officers after an inmate headcount at around 2:45 AM.
According to Shelton, a door to the kitchen had been forced open allowing Medina, who’d been working on the kitchen crew at the time, to walk out and escape in a nearby vehicle that had been waiting for him.
That evening, the Merced County SRT team arrested Medina in the South Dos Palos area, after a rigorous investigation found him hiding at a home in the area.
He had tried to flee, Shelton said, but was captured after a short chase on foot by Deputy Adam Deniz and his K-9 sidekick, Tyson. Medina was then booked into the Merced County Jail, held for his previous charges — violation of probation and felony narcotics charges — as well as the charge of his escape.
He’d been serving a two-year sentence under a state prison realignment law, after which he was scheduled for deportation.
Merced Sun-Star: Escaped Merced County inmate captured