Gaston County inmate tries to escape on Christmas

Gaston County Deputies say the jail is secure after an inmate tried to escape on Christmas night.

Earl Hall was in court Thursday, not for his original offense, but for trying to break out. Lucky for deputies, he was slowed down waiting for the elevator.

“I guess he did not want to be in jail on Christmas,” said Chief Deputy Kim Johnson.

On Tuesday night around 7 o’clock, Gaston County Detention Officers were escorting four inmates from the medical area of the jail back to their cells.

“He brought them out to pat the inmates down and had him against the wall,” said Johnson.

Hall saw his chance to run through an open door, but was caught when he was waiting for the elevator.

“They were on it, as soon as he ran, the officer called for other officers and they grabbed hold of him fast.”

Even if he did catch a lift, the Sheriff’s Office says layers of locked doors would have helped them catch him. Deputies say they have never had an inmate successfully escape, but someone else has tried.

“We had an attempted escape, it was probably 4 or 5 years ago or even longer, where we were walking them across the parking lot and they went underneath a fence that was barley up, and we caught her.”

As for Hall, he has racked up five mug shots over the last two years. His charges include misdemeanor larceny, driving with a revoked license, and not showing up in court.

“We don’t care what they are charged with, if they are supposed to be in the jail they are going to stay in jail. We are here to keep the community safe.”

Hall was booked into jail on Sunday, meaning he was there for two days before he tried to bust out. His bond has now been upgraded to $91,000.