Sheriff's Office: Employee 'carelessness' played a role in Marlboro County inmate's escape

Marlboro County Sheriff Charles Lemon says while he doesn't think it was on purpose, an employee's carelessness played a role in Cyril Lowery's escape and the employee will be held accountable. (WPDE)

Marlboro County Sheriff Charles Lemon says, while he doesn't think it was on purpose, an employee's carelessness did play a role in Cyril Lowery's escape from a Marlboro County jail earlier this week.

Sunday morning, Lowery escaped from the Marlboro County Detention Center. He was being held at the jail on charges related to a drug bust last Friday.

Lowery was finally caught Wednesday at a motel on Highway 9 at I-95 in Dillon.

Lemon says it was a team effort in finding Lowery. The Florence County Sheriff's Office, Chesterfield County Sheriff's Office, Darlington County Sheriff's Office, Marion County, Dillon City and County law enforcement teams all helped Marlboro County deputies and investigators.

"It's a great day in Marlboro County because he's okay and we are [too]," Lemon said.

Now, some are questioning who all is responsible for the escape.

The Sheriff said an employee will be held accountable for their actions related to the escape, regardless of their intent.

"I'm gonna handle it in the proper way it should be handled administratively and I'm gonna handle it in a way that I want to almost feel like, when I do what I have to do as sheriff, that this won't happen again," Lowery said.

Lemon said he's also adding more cameras to the jail and executing more security changes inside the building.

"The additional cameras are gonna be for more safety and it's gonna be able to see some areas that possibly weren't seen will be able to be seen," Lemon said.

Sheriff Lemon isn't the only one worried about safety at the detention center, so are the people who live next door.

Neighbors who have lived near the jail for years say, while they felt safe before, they're now concerned about their security.

"How did he get out so easily? That's what, you know, really scared me--if he could do it, maybe someone else could do it," Stephanie Goodman said.

"I hope they have more control the next time they do something better," Callie Purvis said.

Sheriff Lemon says he can't say exactly what "taking care of it administratively" means.

He does say more arrests will be made in connection those who harbored Lowery while he was a fugitive.

Five people have already been arrested in connection with the incident.

Exactly how Lowery managed to escape is still under investigation.

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