Two inmates were accidentally released from the Fresno County Jail. Fresno County Sheriff’s Captain Rick Hill explained, “We have a pretty good track record of keeping the right people in, and every once in a while, some thing's going to happen. That's what happened in this case.”
25 year old Paul Prieto was mistakenly released from the Fresno County Jail, more than a week ago. He was arrested back in 2010 for armed robbery, in Parlier. He's facing more than 100 years to life in prison. Hill said, “We had court paperwork releasing an inmate with the same last name as the individual that was released so when the officers saw the last name, he started the release process, nobody caught it and that inmate was released accidentally.”
35 year old Timothy Van was also accidentally released, on Tuesday. He was arrested for domestic violence, in December. Van was supposed to be sent to a Poverello House Program, but that didn't happen. The recent mistakes have some people afraid for their safety. Hanford resident, Darren Vanderziel expressed, “It's kind of scary with someone out and about like that.”
Fresno resident Joye Boissoneault said, “They need to make sure they know what they're doing. I have four grandchildren and we live in this area and it doesn't make me happy to know there are a lot of people out there who are set loose and put them in danger.”
Sheriff's deputies say they plan to take preliminary measures to try and prevent future mistakes from happening.
“Both of the errors were pretty much someone not reading court orders so I think there's going to be a training session about once you start at the top, you got to finish at the bottom. You have to make sure it's the right individual being released,” said Hill.
Hill said Van has already contacted law enforcement in an effort to turn himself in. They have not had any contact with Prieto. If you have any information on both of the inmates’ whereabouts, you're asked to call the Fresno County Sheriff's Department.