Patrick Hale, right, with his wife, speaks at a press conference on Friday. (WSMV)
Ricky DuBose (L) and Donnie Rowe were arrested in Rutherford County. The pair are accused of killing two correctional officers earlier this week in Georgia. (Facebook)
The two Georgia escapees were arrested at a home in Christiana. (Photo submitted)
Rutheford County booking photo for Ricky DuBose (Source: Rutherford County Sheriff's Office)
Rutheford County booking photo for Donnie Rowe (Source: Rutherford County Sheriff's Office)
CHRISTIANA, TN (WSMV) -
A Rutherford County homeowner helped police capture two Georgia escapees after they ran onto his property.
Patrick Hale and his family were in a car attempting to leave their Christiana home just before 7 p.m. when he saw Donnie Rowe, 43, and Ricky DuBose, 24, going through a barbed wire fence near his home.
Hale said in a press conference on Friday that he thought they surrendered because his car looks like a police cruiser. Hale said he had a gun and had loaded every gun in his house after neighbors called him to warn him they were in the area. He said he never had to pull the gun to stop them.
Hale said he called 911 at 6:48 p.m. and within three minutes more than 20 officers had arrived at the Pruitt Road home.
Christiana is a small tight knit community, and word spread very quickly last night that DuBose and Rowe were on the run.
Many of the residents were listening to the police scanners and knew the suspects were on the run near the interstate.
They told us they would never have imagined the biggest manhunt in the country would have ended in Christiana Tennessee
"It's a quiet little community road, a little country road here, and they really take care of each other so I thought it was awesome that they did that," says Brad Muse, a neighbor that works on Hale's street.
Muse is auctioning property on Pruitt Road, which backs up to the interstate. He says Rowe and Dubose ran through several hundred yards of heavy forest and a creek before they were caught and held by a homeowner at gunpoint.
“It’s really thick," he explains. "They went through a lot of thick terrain to get here. It wasn’t easy to get here, it’s not easy to get here by road…”
“It’s unusual that’s for sure," says another Christiana resident that lives close-by where the suspects were apprehended.
"You normally sit on the front porch every day and it’s quiet and peaceful and then one day you just see cops and you’re like ‘What the heck?’” She said.
Those frightening moments turned into a big sigh of relief when word spread the suspects had been caught at a nearby house.
Now less than 24 hours later, people here thanking the alert homeowner and police for preventing another violent crime.
“I’m still unsure about it because you never think something like that would happen so close to your house and so close to you. Especially in an area like this…I’m glad they got caught," Kemp says.
Before they made it to Christiana, Rowe and DuBose also tied up a Shelbyville couple and held them at gunpoint for about three hours after their car broke down on Kindree Road.
They left the home around 5 p.m.
The Shelbyville couple were able to notify Bedford County authorities of the home invasion after working free from the binds.
Rutherford County deputies spotted Rowe and DuBose driving the stolen black Jeep Cherokee on Interstate 24 and began pursuit.
Rowe and DuBose wrecked the Jeep near mile marker 91, according to the THP, and fled into the woods alongside the interstate.
Bedford County Sheriff Austin Swing said the couple was lucky to be alive.
He said Rowe and DuBose entered the home with guns drawn and even held guns to the couple's head.
The escapees stayed inside the Shelbyville home for almost three hours before fleeing.
Police officials stopped a car they believed to be Rowe and DuBose on Interstate 24 near the Epps Mill Road exit.
The escaped inmates left the car and fled on foot in the area.
Rowe and DuBose had been on the run since early Tuesday morning when they allegedly shot and killed two corrections officers in Georgia while they were being transferred to another facility by transport bus.