CLEVELAND-A man wanted for escaping from the Cuyahoga County Jail has been caught, and as we looked into how he got out, the acting sheriff admitted he learned of what happened after the first reports by the FOX 8 I-Team.
Investigators say Tuesday, Ferdinand Torres-Vargas went to court on a domestic violence case, and then he disappeared from the jail. The escape may not have been noticed by corrections officers for 12 hours.
Police arrested Vargas Thursday after getting a tip saying he had shown up looking for a paycheck at a warehouse in Brooklyn where he had worked.
The I-Team also went to the Justice Center, taking a deeper look at what went wrong.
Sheriff David Schilling said investigators are still trying to figure out exactly how the prisoner got out.
Schilling also told the I-Team, “Well, you actually kind of found out as usual before we even did.”
So we asked, didn’t anyone call him and alert him to a crisis? “No one at the jail called the sheriff?”
Schilling said, “I was called later on…”
Multiple sources say the initial investigation showed Vargas went to Cleveland Municipal Court. And he may have gotten out of the lock-up through a side door or fire exit door. We also asked why it wasn’t noticed by guards right away. Again, it may have gone unnoticed for 12 hours.
The sheriff added, “Well, that I don’t have an answer for you right now. Again, that’s part of our investigation. We’re trying to figure that out as well to see. There may have been a glitch there.”
Investigators confirm they’ve also been investigating the possibility that inmate had clothing waiting for him outside the jail when he escaped. Deputies couldn’t immediately rule it out. You wonder how far a prisoner in an orange jumpsuit would make it on the streets before someone would take notice and take action.
The I-Team has also obtained a recording with Vargas under interrogation for escaping from the same jail before. He also got out in 2015. Cuyahoga County prosecutors convicted him for that.
After the arrest for the latest escape, the US Marshals say someone will get a reward for the tip showing where to find Vargas.
Meantime, investigators hope he will open up and help explain how he got out of jail this time unnoticed.
Vargas now is due back in court next week.