Nineteen-year-old convicted killer T.J. Lane, who fatally shot three Chardon High School students in Ohio in 2012, was captured early Friday morning after escaping from prison Thursday night, according to police.
Lane escaped with two other inmates from Allen Oakwood Correctional Facility, 90 miles northwest of Columbus, Lima Police Sgt. Andy Green told the Associated Press. Lindsey Bruce, 33, who is serving a life sentence for murder, was caught quickly. Police were still searching Thursday night for Lane and the other missing inmate, identified as 45-year-old Clifford E. Opperud, in woods and a residential area near the prison.
Opperud was apprehended hours after Lane, the Columbus Dispatch reported. Opperud is serving time for aggravated robbery, burglary and kidnapping. Lane is serving three life sentences for the school slayings.
Chardon High School officials, who had been monitoring the manhunt, announced early Friday that the school would be closed on Friday and that counselors would be available to students and staff members.
In February 2012, Lane walked into the cafeteria at Chardon High School with a .22-caliber pistol and a knife — and fired 10 shots. He had been waiting for a bus to take him to a nearby alternative school he attended. Daniel Parmertor and Demetrius Hewlin, both 16, and Russell King Jr., 17, were killed. Three other students were injured, the Courier reported.
Before Lane’s trial, a juvenile court judge found him competent to stand trial despite evidence he suffered from hallucinations. At the sentencing hearing last year, he wore a white T-shirt scribbled with the word “killer” and flipped-off his victims’ families. He was given three life sentences.
After the escape Thursday evening, Lane’s former attorney, Ian Friedman, said via Twitter that he had been asked whether Lane is a danger.
#TJLane I’ve been asked whether he is a danger. Answer is no one ever wants to return to prison for a life sentence. Plus, case facts speak.
— Ian Friedman (@IanNFriedman) September 12, 2014
It appears that Lane had been hiding in a farmhouse or barn in a rural area Thursday night, a photographer told NewsChannel5. No information regarding how the inmates escaped was immediately released.
“I’m disgusted that it happened,” Dina Parmertor, the mother of victim Daniel Parmertor, told reporters after Lane’s escape. “I’m disgusted that it happened. I’m extremely scared and panic-stricken. I can’t believe it.”
This story has been updated.