COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — A 16-year-old inmate who escaped from a South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice facility on Wednesday has been captured and returned to custody.
The teenager was found around 11:30 a.m. on Thursday, about 8 miles (13 kilometers) away from the Columbia facility he escaped from, Juvenile Justice Department officials confirmed in a post to Twitter. Someone called and tipped off authorities to his location, the department added. He was given a medical exam after being caught, but the department didn't say if he sustained injuries.
The 16-year-old left the department's Broad River Road Complex on Wednesday night, prompting a search by the State Law Enforcement Division and other agencies. Investigators found some of his discarded clothing Thursday morning ahead of his capture, Juvenile Justice officials said.
Authorities didn't detail how he was able to escape.
The teenager is serving a 35-year sentence on adult criminal sexual conduct charges. He was convicted of sexually assaulting and seriously injuring a 72-year-old woman in her Surfside Beach home in July, news outlets reported.