Thursday Aug 11 2011
Former inmate breaks back into new Folsom prison
By: Penne Usher, Telegraph Correspondent
A parolee was apprehended after breaking in to new Folsom prison Thursday morning. Marvin L. Ussrey, 48, was found hiding in tall grasses on the grounds of California State Prison, Sacramento, in Folsom. Officials said Sacramento County Sheriff’s deputies working security on the Folsom Dam noticed someone near the perimeter of the prison grounds just before midnight Wednesday and notified prison officials. Sgt. Tony Quinn, with the prison, said authorities conducted an emergency count and determined that all inmates were accounted for. “We didn’t have an escapee,” he said. “We sent staff out to search the perimeter for the suspicious person.” A bicycle was located near a thicket of grass where law enforcement thought they saw the suspect jump over the fence, Quinn said. This particular section of fence does not have razor wire as the area and gate are SMUD property. “Marvin was found in our Prison Industry Authority recycle area – in tall grass,” Quinn said. “He was lying down trying to go undetected.” Ussrey has been on parole since 2009 after serving time for second degree robbery. Quinn said he had been housed at the prison’s non-violent offenders section. The prison in Folsom, commonly known as New Folsom Prison is, for the most part, a maximum security level-four prison. Sgt. Chris Emery of the Folsom Police Department said his department assisted in the search for Ussrey. “Anytime someone escapes or there is something else going on out there, we assist,” he said. It is not clear at this point why Ussrey broke into the prison area. “This guy is a vet, not a first timer and we didn’t expect much cooperation,” Quinn said. “He basically said he was reminiscing.” Officials believe the suspect may have been sneaking in to drop off contraband to an inmate. This isn’t the first time someone has broken into the jail. Quinn said others have been caught trying to smuggle items in to their inmate “buddies.” “(Parolees) know the layout of the area,” Quinn said. “He could have been dropping off cell phones, drugs or tobacco to his buddies. “We suspect this is the case, but haven’t found anything at this point.” Ussrey was first seen near the prison at 11:30 p.m. Wednesday and located at 7 a.m. Thursday. “That’s a lot of time. We’ve had staff searching ever since,” Quinn said. Staff has more than 880 acres to search for any contraband. Ussrey was arrested and has been charged with trespassing and being a felon on state property.