Tensas inmate still on the loose

Published 12:02 am Saturday, July 14, 2012

WATERPROOF — The Tensas Parish Detention Center inmate who stole a police car Thursday night and escaped from the Tensas Parish Sheriff’s Office jail is still at large.

Tensas Parish Sheriff Rickey Jones said police have not located Benjamin Gottke, 43, who was working as a trustee in the sheriff’s office kitchen when he stole a backup police car and escaped.

Benjamin Gottke

Jones said a jailer went to check on Gottke after Gottke said he needed to go to the restroom and noticed that he was gone.

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“He evidently had a key to the yard,” Jones said.

Jones said Gottke stole a white unmarked 2002 white Ford Crown Victoria with public license plate PP178449.

Gottke, Jones said, is a white male, who is 5-foot-11 and weighs 213 pounds. He was wearing a white T-shirt and orange pants when he escaped.

Jones said Gottke has an ID from Houma, La., and a driver’s license from Scott, La., and could have been headed that way.

Jones said Gottke was serving time for simple burglary and had only about nine months left on his sentence and was soon going to be eligible for work release.

Gottke is now being charged with simple escape and theft of a vehicle.

Anyone with information should call the Tensas Parish Sheriff’s Office at 318-766-3961.