Two convicted Florida murderers who got out of prison with forged court documents have been apprehended. Florida authorities arrested Charles Walker and Joseph Jenkins at a Panama City motel Saturday night. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement says they were taken into custody “without incident.” Walker and Jenkins, both 34, were released from the Franklin Correctional Institution in Florida’s panhandle. Jenkins left prison on September 27th. Walker was released on October 8th. It’s not known if Jenkins and Walker knew each other while at the same prison.
On Saturday, the families of Jenkins and Walker gathered at a news conference in Orlando a few hours earlier. They pleaded for the men to surrender peacefully and end the manhunt.
Both men secured their early release with fake documents that had the seal of the Orange County Clerk of Court’s office. The legal-like papers also had the forged signatures of people in the Orlando area courts and corrections system, including Judge Belvin Perry and a state attorney. Judge Perry presided over the Casey Anthony trial.
Before both men sprung out of jail, Jenkins was serving a life sentence for killing Roscoe Pugh Jr. during a home invasion robbery attempt in September 1998. Pugh’s family was fearful and upset that Jenkins was released early by mistake.
Walker also was serving a life sentence for the shooting death of Cedric Slater on an Orlando street corner.
A reward of $10,000 each was offered for information leading to Jenkins or Walker’s arrest. Orange County Sheriff Jerry Demings described both men as “dangerous individuals” and both were thought to be in the Orlando area based on “legitimate spottings” of the men.