Two female inmates recently made a break for it while being transferred into a vehicle after a court appearance in Brighton, MI. It was less than one hour before both were back under lock and key after a massive manhunt in Livingston County.
32-year-old Lisa Finlayson of South Lyon, and 40-year-old Nicole Vermeylen of Flushing are said to have broken free while a deputy was transferring them into a transport van to take them back to the county jail in Howell, Michigan. Both women had made appearances in the 53rd District Court in Livingston County.
Police capture Finlayson within 20 minutes of her escape
According to Livingston County Undersheriff Mike Murphy, law enforcement was able to capture Finlayson within 20 minutes of her escape. She was allegedly located in the water of Mill Pond, a substantial body of water. Police used a dredging machine to capture the escapee. it took police longer to recapture Vermeylen. She had fled the immediate area and was hiding inside a house she had allegedly broken into.
Officers from the Brighton Police Department were assisted in their search efforts by Livingston County Sheriff’s Deputies, Hamburg police officers and Michigan State Police troopers. In addition, a canine unit was called in and a search helicopter had been called in when the second missing inmate was finally discovered about an hour after she first fled.
Police say that Vermeylen had broken into an aea home and stolen a purse and a change of clothing when they discovered her leaving the home and heading out. She was rearrested and both women were transported back to the Livingston County jail. Police say that they intend to seek new charges against both escapees.
Vermeylen was behind bars for second-degree child abuse and contributing to the delinquency of a minor, second offense. The child abuse charge is a felony, while the delinquency charge is a misdemeanor. Finlayson had been convicted of operating under the influence of a controlled substance. She was accused of having cocaine in her system when she struck and killed a motorcyclist with her car in 2015. She is still awaiting sentencing on this charge.
The deputy who was transporting the two women said that both were handcuffed at the time, but managed to slip from their cuffs before fleeing. Current jail transportation policies state that only one deputy is needed to transport two prisoners, but Undersheriff Murphy says that the department will review their policies again in light of this incident.
As experienced criminal defense attorneys, we remind all of our readers that attempting to break free from police captivity is not a good way to get out of jail. If you don’t want to spend time behind bars (and who would?) find the best possible defense attorney you can and use all of the legal avenues available to you. Making a break for it will only result in additional charges and even more time behind bars.