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As Search Continues For Escaped Inmates, Separate Probe Looks Into Wakulla Jail Staff

Wakulla County Sheriff's office
43-year-old Joel Cooper, 44-year-old Donald Cotterman, and 25-year-old Casey Brandon escaped from the Wakulla County jail early Friday morning. Authorities are still looking for them.

Three inmates who escaped the Wakulla County Jail last week are still at large.  Local authorities believe they may no longer be in the area.

Early Friday morning, the Wakulla County Sheriff’s officials said they believed the inmates—two white and one black—escaped through the ceiling of the jail’s Law library.

Wakulla County Schools were also closed for the day and continue to be now for the Thanksgiving holiday.

The search continued into the weekend for 43-year-old Joel Cooper, 44-year-old Donald Cotterman, and 25-year-old Casey Brandon.

While sheriff’s deputies believe the escapees have now left the area, they are still asking Wakulla County residents to remain vigilant and contact the sheriff’s office if they hear or see anything suspicious.

The number to call is 850-745-7100.

Meanwhile, a separate investigation is underway into the jail’s policies and whether any deficiencies by local jail staff helped in the escape.

For more news updates, follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter: @SaschaCordner.

Sascha Cordner has more than ten years of public radio experience. It includes working at NPR member station WUFT-FM in Gainesville for several years. She's worked in both radio and TV, serving in various capacities as a reporter, producer and anchor. She's also a graduate of the University of Florida with a bachelor's degree in telecommunications. She is the recipient of 15 awards from the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ), and Edward R. Murrow. Her award-winning stories include her coverage on the infamous “Dozier School for Boys” and a feature titled "Male Breast Cancer: Lost in the Sea of Pink." Currently, Sascha serves as the host and producer of local and state news content for the afternoon news program "All Things Considered" at WFSU. Sascha primarily covers criminal justice and social services issues. When she's not reporting, Sascha likes catching up on her favorite TV shows, singing and reading. Follow Sascha Cordner on Twitter:@SaschaCordner.