Arizona suspect Joseph Andrew Dekenipp was determined to spend Valentine’s Day with his girlfriend, CNN affiliate KTVK reported.
So much so that he crawled past a razor wire, scaled two fences and made his way to a restaurant about 10 miles away, according to authorities.
Dekenipp went missing Friday afternoon from a fenced recreation yard at the detention center in Florence,according to the affiliate.
When inmates there returned to their residential units, Dekenipp was nowhere to be found.
He had made the daring escape and was headed to a restaurant in nearby Coolidge, where he was going to meet his girlfriend, the affiliate said.
Pinal County deputies used K-9 dogs to track him down, but his scent later disappeared, the affiliate said.
They pulled over cars on nearby roadways and searched them. Their big break came when two teens told authorities that their friend gave Dekenipp a ride to the restaurant. Deputies hightailed it to the eatery, where they found Dekenipp in a bar. And no, he wasn’t wearing his jail jumper.
Three hours after his escape, his handcuffs clinked shut again without incident. He was hauled back to Pinal County Adult Detention Center.
Dekenipp was booked in jail last month on various charges, including suspected car theft, unlawful flight and driving on a suspended license, the affiliate reported.
At the time, he was held on a $5,000 bond and had a pretrial hearing set for February 25, according to the affiliate.
The lovebird — and jailbird — may be apart from his girlfriend for a longer period.
In addition to all that, he’s now facing an escape charge.