Residents living near Erlanger on high alert, search for escapee continues
Residents who live near Erlanger are on high alert after Anthony Bell escaped police custody at the hospital Sunday morning.
"One unique thing about him this morning when he fled, he was wearing handcuffs and in a hospital gown and no shoes," said Chief Deputy Austin Garrett.
Seven hours after Anthony Bell’s escape, Chief Deputy Austin Garrett released his name to reporters and revealed the depth of Bell's criminal past.
Around that same time, investigators found Bell’s hospital gown.
"I am honestly terrified. I live less than a mile from Erlanger-- it's literally right behind us," said Hannah Hurt. Hurt lives approximately 200 yards from the hospital where Bell escaped.
"He was right there, could have walked right past my house. That was absolutely terrifying knowing that I was sleeping right there," Hurt told Channel 3.
Hurt echoing the same question several asked on the Sheriff’s Office Facebook page -- as to why it took so long for the inmate's information to be released.
"No one knew anything about it like there was no precautions taken-- that is terrifying," Hurt said.
Garrett says the department chose to issue a press release two hours after the escape that did not include Bell’s name or description to give investigators more time.
"My investigative services unit requested a little bit of time to follow up on leads this morning to help maybe facilitate a quicker apprehension," said Garrett.
It took the department seven hours to release Bell's name and photo who has yet to be apprehended.
"They do the Hamilton County things on our phones all the time-- they definitely could have notified somebody. It would have been nice to know," Hurt told Channel 3.
Hurt is on guard now that Bell is on The TBI's Most Wanted List. She hopes he is back in custody soon.
Chief Deputy Austin Garrett is asking for residents to stay vigilant and report any suspicious activity.