4 inmates escaped and 'walked away' from a federal prison in Virginia

4 inmates escaped and 'walked away' from a federal prison in Virginia
Four inmates escaped a minimum-security facility in Virginia on Saturday, according to the Bureau of Prisons.Bureau of Prisons
  • Four inmates at a minimum-security federal lockup in Virginia escaped on Saturday and "walked away."
  • The staff realized the men were missing at around 1:45 a.m.

Federal prison officials announced that four inmates escaped from a facility in Hopewell, Virginia, early Saturday morning and haven't been seen since.

Officials identified the inmates as Corey Branch, Tavares Lajuane Graham, Lamonte Rashawn Willis, and Kareem Allen Shaw. The Bureau of Prisons said that staff realized the men were missing around 1:45 a.m. on Saturday.

The Bureau of Prisons did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment. It's unclear how the inmates escaped, but the BOP said the inmates "walked away" from the facility, according to the local CBS affiliate WTVR.

The facility the inmates escaped from was the Federal Correctional Complex Petersburg's satellite camp, which is a minimum-security facility housing 185 male inmates, according to the BOP.

Each of the inmates are serving lengthy sentences for drug or gun-related crimes, according to federal prison records and a press release. Graham is serving 10 years, Branch is serving 13 years, Shaw is serving 16 years, and Willis is serving 18 years.


The BOP said the US Marshals and the FBI are investigating the escape.

Federal prisons across the US have seen dozens of inmate escapes in recent years — all of them at minimum-security camps like FCC Petersburg. According to an Associated Press investigation last year, 29 inmates escaped federal lockups between January 2020 and June 2021.

Many of the escapes were so-called "walk-aways," where inmates simply walked away from facilities, often unimpeded. Many federal minimum-security facilities lack fences or metal detectors, and some walk-aways resulted from accidentally unlocked doors or broken alarm or surveillance systems, according to AP.