HICKMAN, Kentucky – Officials mistakenly released a prisoner from a Kentucky facility after receiving a phony fax that ordered him freed, and it took them nearly two weeks to realize it.
The fax contained grammatical errors, was not typed on letterhead and was sent from a local grocery store. The fax falsely claimed that the Kentucky Supreme Court "demanded" Timothy Rouse be released.
Rouse, 19, is charged with beating an elderly man and was at the Kentucky Correctional & Psychiatric Center in La Grange for a mental evaluation. He was released April 6 after officials received the fake court order.
Lexington police arrested Rouse at his mother's home Thursday evening.
"It's outrageous that it happened," Fulton County Attorney Rick Major said. "I'm just glad nobody got hurt because he's dangerous."
Police are still investigating who faxed the letter.
Attorney Carlos Moran, who is representing Rouse, declined to comment.
Prison officials did not notice that the fax came from the grocery store because policies did not require checking the source of a faxed order, said the LaGrange facility's director, Greg Taylor.
"It's not part of a routine check, but certainly, in hindsight, that would perhaps have caused somebody to ask a question," he said. Misspellings on orders are common, he said.