A Santa Cruz man is back in police custody today after escaping from the Santa Cruz County Jail Monday. Deputies from the Santa Cruz County Sheriff’s Office re-arrested Craig Souza, a 34-year-old Santa Cruz resident around 12:30 p.m. after Souza turned himself in. Detectives had contacted him by phone, according to the sheriff’s office.
Souza was discovered missing from the Santa Cruz County Jail around 7:10 p.m. Monday after he was apparently able to walk through a staff door, past a guard who was monitoring security cameras and out the jail doors, sheriff’s officials said. Souza had been arrested about two hours earlier on suspicion of a probation violation and providing a false name to a police officer, the sheriff’s office said. After Souza was reported missing, the jail was immediately locked down, and a notice was issued to all Santa Cruz law enforcement officials, the sheriff’s office said. According to deputies, Souza is being interviewed by detectives and will be booked into the Santa Cruz County Main Jail again — this time on charges that include escape.
Souza was the first person to escape from the Santa Cruz County Main Jail since 2003, when two inmates escaped via the laundry room, according to the sheriff’s office. About 12,000 inmates are booked into the Santa Cruz County Jail each year, according to the sheriff’s office.
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