Facebook helps lead deputies to prison escapees

WALLA WALLA SHERIFF'S DEPT. NEWS RELEASE -- On January 20, 2014 at approximately 7:49 AM, a citizen reported that she had been perusing Facebook and read that two individuals had escaped from an Idaho penal institution. The citizen said she pulled into the Zip-Zone Market at 110 South 9th Street, Walla Walla, and observed two young men in a vehicle with Idaho license plates. The citizen decided to contact law enforcement and report her sighting.

Dispatchers ran the license plate provided by the citizen and determined the vehicle was a reported stolen out of Idaho. Further inquiry revealed the stolen vehicle was related to the two Idaho escapees. Officers were immediately dispatched to the Zip-Zone Market; however, the vehicle had already left the area.

Walla Walla Dispatch broadcast the information to area units. A Walla Walla Sheriff's unit was situated on Highway 12, in the Lowden area. Moments after receiving the information, Deputy Brian Bush observed the stolen Toyota Corolla drive past him, westbound on Highway 12.
Deputy Bush pulled in behind the Corolla and requested assistance. Additional units from the Walla Walla County Sheriff's Office and the Washington State Patrol arrived. The escapees briefly attempted to evade; however, they drove down a dead end street. A vehicle stop was conducted and both occupants were detained peacefully and without incident.

The driver was identified as Ridge Scott Dains, 21, from Boise. The passenger was identified as Caleb Joe Thomas, 20, from Caldwell. Both of the suspects are convicted felons. In the aftermath of the arrests, a loaded .45 caliber pistol was located under the passenger seat of the Corolla and an SKS Assault Rifle was located in the trunk.
Both Dains and Thomas are being held in the Walla Walla County Jail, pending local charges and contact with Idaho authorities.
We thank the citizen who contacted Walla Walla Dispatch with her observations. This is just another example of citizens working with local law enforcement for a successful outcome. The Walla Walla County Sheriff encourages citizens to call dispatch if and when they think something is out of the ordinary. Just as in this case, law enforcement would much rather a citizen call and it turn out to be nothing, than not call and let wanted felons such as these proceed in our community. Thank you to all citizens who help and support our local law enforcement efforts.

BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) -- The two men who officials say escaped a northern Idaho prison over the weekend have been captured.

The Idaho Department of Correction said Monday that Ridge Dains, 21, and Caleb Thomas, 20, were found driving in a stolen vehicle in Walla Walla, Wash.

Authorities have not said how they believe the two escaped but searchers found footprints going away from the prison.

Sgt. John Burke with the Idaho State Police called the two men "dangerous."

Thomas was serving time for grand theft, arson and destruction and alteration or concealment of evidence and has a long list of violations in his history.

Dains has a criminal record that includes battery and theft. He was serving time for burglary.