Work center inmate caught in Mathiston

From Press, Staff Reports


A state inmate who failed to return from a weekend pass Monday, July 15 was captured later that night in Choctaw County.

John Jason “Gooch” Lee was arrested at midnight in Choctaw County, according to the Mississippi Department of Corrections. Authorities were searching for Lee, 44, who was an inmate at the Noxubee County Community Work Center in Macon. He failed to return from a weekend pass earlier Monday, the MDOC stated.

According to the Webster County Sheriff’s Department, a woman living on Bluff Springs Road in Choctaw County called 911 Monday night (July 15) to inform authorities that a strange man had asked to use her phone because he had run out of gas.

Officers with the MDOC-Community Corrections Division, Choctaw County sheriff’s deputies, Mathiston Police Department officers, Webster County sheriff’s deputies and the U.S. Marshals Service Fugitive Task Force responded to the call.

When the officers arrived, they apprehended and took Lee into custody. MDOC officials then took him to the Webster County Jail to await transport to the Central Mississippi Correctional Facility in Pearl.

Lee is serving a 12-year sentence for convictions of burglary of a vehicle and vehicle theft from Clay and Webster counties. He now faces an additional five years if convicted of escape.