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Man Who Escaped Work Release, Caused Shutdown of I-80 Waives Hearing

Wednesday, August 5, 2020 @ 12:08 AM

Posted by Aly Delp

AG Law (Gavel)JEFFERSON CO., Pa. (EYT) – A man who reportedly walked away from a work-release program in Jefferson County then caused a closure of Interstate 80 in Clarion County waived his hearing in court on Tuesday.

Court documents indicate the following charge against 27-year-old Ronald James Clark Jr., of McDonald, Pa., was waived for court on Tuesday, August 4:

– Escape, Misdemeanor 2

The case has been transferred to the Jefferson County Court of Common Pleas.

Details of the case:

According to a criminal complaint, around 9:00 a.m. on May 22, Punxsutawney-based State Police received a call from a Jefferson County Probation Officer who reported that Ronald James Clark Jr. who was currently housed in the Jefferson County Jail and was on work release, employed by a Brookville area business, was required to return to the jail by 3:00 p.m., but on May 21, Clark left work early and failed to report back to the jail as required.

According to the complaint, Clarion-based State Police then located Clark on the Interstate 80 eastbound bridge at mile marker 61 in Monroe Township, Clarion County, after receiving calls about an individual on the bridge.

According to police, troopers were dispatched to the Interstate 80 Clarion River Bridge around 2:15 p.m. on May 21 after receiving a report of a man preparing to jump off of the bridge.

Interstate 80 was closed in both directions between Exit 60 (Shippenville) and Exit 62 (Clarion) for several hours as a result of the incident.

Clark was then taken into custody and transported back to the Jefferson County Jail.

The complaint states Clark violated his work release conditions by failing to report back to the jail as required.

The charge was filed through Magisterial District Judge Gregory M Bazylak’s office on May 22.


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