Concordia Parish inmate walks off detail, captured within 10 minutes

Published 12:05 am Thursday, February 21, 2019


VIDALIA — A Concordia Parish inmate walked off a work detail Wednesday afternoon but was captured within 10 minutes, officials said.

Those 10 minutes of freedom, however, could cost the inmate many more years in prison, as he now faces several new charges.

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Concordia Parish Correctional Facility Warden Lance Moore said inmate Matthew Morgan, 54, was on a work detail cleaning up the parking lot of the Concordia Parish Sheriff’s Office building when he walked off the job.

Concordia Parish Chief Deputy David Hedrick said the sheriff’s office immediately issued an all points bulletin (APB) after Morgan was noticed missing.

Shortly after the APB was issued, Hedrick said, a Vidalia Police Officer spotted Morgan in the parking lot of a nearby Walmart.

“He attempted to steal a vehicle from the Walmart parking lot,” Hedrick said. “A Vidalia police officer saw him and when he saw the officer, (Morgan) went in to the bank across the parking lot.”

Hedrick said a person was in the vehicle when Morgan was attempting to steal it but was not harmed.

Hedrick said a Louisiana State Trooper Mark Davis happened to see Morgan going into the bank and recognized him from the APB.

Davis then apprehended Morgan and took him back into custody, Hedrick said.

“All of this took place in about 10 minutes,” Hedrick said. “I would like to commend Chief Joey Merrill and his officers and the Louisiana Trooper Mark Davis for their actions in making a swift arrest. They were on the ball, stepped up and took care of business, and I’m very proud of them.”

Moore said Morgan had been in the Concordia Parish Correctional Facility for approximately eight months where he was serving a four-year sentence for violating parole when he was caught with a firearm and was charged with being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.

Morgan of Rapides Parish is now back in custody and faces charges of attempted second-degree kidnapping, attempted carjacking and simple escape.

“Those are all felonies,” Moore said. “He is a past offender. He could be looking at a lot of time.”