Escaped Georgia convicts who allegedly killed two guards captured in Tennessee

Two inmates who killed two Georgia Correctional officers in Putnam County have been captured in Tennessee after a three-day manhunt.

According to Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal, 43-year-old Donnie Russell Rowe and 24-year-old Ricky DuBose were apprehended after a auto chase in Tennessee.

Sills said the two inmates overpowered and killed Sgt. Christopher Monica and Sgt. Curtis Billue early Tuesday on a bus that should have been secured as it carried inmates between prisons.

Law enforcement officers were stationed along local Interstate 85 exits on Thursday after reports that two escaped inmates sought in the killing of guards in Georgia could possibly be traveling the road in this direction, although there was no solid evidence to confirm that suspicion, authorities said. Authorities say two escaped inmates from Georgia have been captured after a crash on Interstate 24 and a foot pursuit in Rutherford County Thursday evening.

"Now we're gonna go into the prosecution and trial mode", Putnam County Sheriff Howard Sills said in a news conference with reporters after the arrest.

With the men now in custody, authorities will soon sort out their extradition to Georgia and also the future of a reward that rose from $60,000 to $130,000 as the days passed. While the fugitives fired numerous gun shots at the deputies' vehicle, no one was hurt.

"Both officers were known for their unwavering commitment to their job and their love of family", the Georgia Department of Corrections said in a statement.

A police spokesperson in Tennessee said once the couple called authorities, they found the fugitives, which led to a chase that included the suspect's allegedly shooting at officers.

"True bravery is what's caused us to stand before you tonight to talk about a successful capture instead of a tragic end", Tennessee Bureau of Investigation Director Mark Gwyn said.

The saga began with what could have been a scene out of a movie: 33 inmates were riding on a Georgia corrections bus as they were being driven to another prison.

Tennessee Highway Patrol spokesman Lt. Bill Miller says that's when the fugitives tried to steal another vehicle. He said he didn't know how they got through the locked cage to overpower the guards.

The man who held the suspects at bay at gunpoint is set to speak at 5 p.m.

Word of the arrests came as the families of the corrections officers, Christopher Monica, 42, and Curtis Billue, 58, were planning their funerals.

They most recently were housed at Baldwin State Prison near Milledgeville. Dubose and Rowe were both taken into custody without further incident or injury.

The homeowner kept the gun pointed at the two, calling over his neighbor for backup while they waited for the Rutherford County Sheriff's Department to arrive. Those inmates have provided assistance to investigators, officials said. Rowe has been serving a life sentence since 2002 with convictions including armed robbery, possession of a firearm during a crime and aggravated assault.

Dubose was sentenced to up to 20 years in prison for armed robbery, aggravated assault and theft in 2014.

  • Leroy Wright