Prisoner gets short-lived freedom after mistaken release
A Wilbarger County man sought by authorities after being mistakenly released from jail is back in custody. He was arrested a few short hours after authorities realized that he had incorrectly been released by a jailer, stated District Attorney Staley Heatly.
Christopher Odell McManus was being held in the Wilbarger County Jail for charges stemming from a 2016 incident in which he evaded arrest with a motor vehicle. He was set to go to trial in April of 2016 when he fled Vernon as a jury was being empaneled in his case. In 2019, the US Marshall’s Service located McManus in South Carolina, and he was arrested and extradited back to Texas. The additional felony charge of bail jumping was added to his case. He was being held without bond in his felony cases. However, early last week McManus appeared in county court where he entered a plea of guilty to an outstanding misdemeanor charge. A jailer failed to take note of McManus’ outstanding felony charges and released him as a result of his misdemeanor plea.
The Wilbarger County Sheriff’s Office conducted an all-out search for McManus as soon as they realized what had occurred on Friday afternoon. He was back in custody before midnight.