As we covered yesterday, Johnell Carter, a child molester facing possible life in prison has escaped custody from a correctional deputy transporting him for medical reasons and is still at large. The inmate was being transported by a correctional deputy from Elmwood county jail to Valley Medical Center on March 6, 2015. The inmate attacked the correctional deputy in the parking lot and ran off, still in restraints.
Law enforcement is still seeking Johnell Carter; Crime Stoppers and the Deputy Sheriff’s Association of Santa Clara County, representing the patrol deputies of the county, are each offering $3,000, for a total of a $6,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of Carter.
Carter is 40 years old, he is described as 5 feet 11 inches tall, weighing 220 pounds with a shaved head and a mole on the left side of his chin. He has a tattoo on the side of his neck that says “AMY” and another on his left, upper arm that says “Johnell Jr.”
Anyone with information on this case, please contact the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office. Carter is considered armed and dangerous, if you see Carter, do not try to apprehend him, please call 9-1-1.
If you have information that may lead deputies to Carter, please contact Investigations at (408)808-4500 or the anonymous tip line at (408)808-4431.
You can also provide tips to Silicon Valley Crime Stoppers at 408-947-7867 or by e-mail at TIPSUBMIT.com.
Both deputies and correctional deputies (DSA and CPOA, respectively) understand that budgetary limitations are always an issue, they will never get all the bells and whistles we see on the TV shows. However, the practice should be that we ensure they get the minimum they need to secure their safety, the inmate’s safety, and most importantly the public’s safety at a reasonable level. There were two major failures here that were caused due to cutting costs in a fashion that significantly, and in my opinion, unreasonably risked safety — why was a lone correctional deputy sent out to both transport and secure an inmate in the public, and why, later during the search, was the search called off at the 5 o’ clock dinner bell (5:45PM) so to speak?
We hope that Carter is caught and safely brought to justice. At the same time, we hope that this situation brings the sheriff to realize that running the Sheriff’s Office on a bare bones process has risked everyone’s safety once again. We’re not holding our breath though since the Sheriff has shown her remorse by getting the usual suspects at the Mercury News to shoe horn her in on the DSA’s donation by having her office make an announcement for the DSA’s donation as if she had some part in the decision. Trying to take credit for the donation is no better than the attempt by Herhold to push the blame off on a homeowner for deputies not catching Carter because he took 15 minutes to make sure he was safe and everything in his home was okay before calling 911. If the Sheriff left the perimeter in place, there was an increased likelihood he would have been caught. Perhaps if the Sheriff’s Office had ordered a reverse 911 call or tried to set up an emergency alert system announcement, homeowners in that immediate area would have been alerted to the danger present and been a little more prepared for the surprise of finding someone.
Perhaps this why the DSA, CPOA and so many other law enforcement related organizations all endorsed our sheriff’s opponent last election, trying to explain to the community the public risk of re-electing Laurie Smith.