Convicted killers serving life sentences were mistakenly released from prison, the Franklin Correctional Institution in the Florida Panhandle. Joseph Jenkins, who was released on Sept. 27, and Charles Walker, who was freed Oct. 8., had forged paperwork. Guards put one man on the bus and another in the car with family and sent them on their merry way, which is the Florida Department of Correction’s standard operating procedure.
Jenkins, 34, was found guilty of first-degree murder in the 1998 killing of Roscoe Pugh, an Orlando man. Walker was convicted of second-degree murder in a 1999 death in Orange County of Cedric Slater, 23, who he says was bullying him when he fired three shots meant to scare him.
The forged documents included a fake motion from prosecutors to correct “illegal” sentences and Chief Circuit Judge Belvin Perry’s forged signature on documents for both escapees. Perry presided over the Casey Anthony case.
Another man serving a life sentence for the attempted murder of a law enforcement officer was also falsely scheduled to be released this spring, but it was discovered before he was set free.