Georgia Inmate Escapes Briefly
Jul. 07, 1999
LYONS, Ga. (AP) _ A man charged with killing four members of a family escaped from jail but was recaptured about 12 hours later as he walked along a nearby highway.
Still wearing the red boxer shorts and white T-shirt he had on when he escaped from his cell, Jerry Scott Heidler was nabbed shortly before 5 p.m. Tuesday near Vidalia, about six miles from the jail in Lyons.
``After being read his rights he said that he was tired of running,'' said Bob Herz, a sheriff's department spokesman. ``It was quite obvious he made no attempt to camouflage himself.''
Heidler, 22, was captured after someone called in a tip that he had been seen near Vidalia. A trooper spotted him walking along the highway.
Sheriff Alvie Kight Jr. declined to discuss details of the escape, which he said was under investigation.
Heidler, who is charged with killing four members of a Santa Claus, Ga., family three weeks before Christmas in 1997, escaped sometime between 3:30 a.m. and 5 a.m.
He is scheduled to stand trial in August on charges he broke into the home of Danny and Kim Daniels, shooting them in their bed and then shooting Mrs. Daniels' 8-year-old son and Daniels' 16-year-old daughter.
Police said he also kidnapped three girls _ ages 8, 9 and 10 _ and left them on a dirt road about 50 miles from their home. Two other children were left in the house unharmed.
Three of the seven children who lived in the house were in foster care.
The family had invited Heidler to their church and he had lived in their home briefly, investigators said.