Mineral Wells Index, Mineral Wells, TX

March 20, 2014

SO inmate walks off


— By CLINT FOSTER



PALO PINTO – A Palo Pinto County Jail inmate can now add the felony offense of escaping imprisonment to the Class B misdemeanor charge for driving while intoxicated that put him behind bars to begin with.

According to Palo Pinto County Chief Deputy Mike Sudderth, law enforcement officials are searching for 32-year-old Gary Michael Wooten, who decided to skip town while mowing the lawn of the Palo Pinto County Courthouse, Wednesday.

Wooten is described as a white male, 5-foot-9, 145 pounds, wearing blue pants and a blue button-down shirt with "Palo Pinto County Jail" stamped across the back. Sudderth said the last reported sighting of Wooten was about a mile east of Palo Pinto in a pasture.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Sudderth said a helicopter and multiple officers with dogs were on Wooten's trail.

Sudderth advised citizens not to pick up any hitchhikers and to report any suspicious people that look like they're walking someplace they shouldn't be.