Man back behind bars after mistakenly released from prison - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: Mistaken prison release deemed a clerical error

Anthony Ramsey, 51 Anthony Ramsey, 51


ALTA, W. Va (WVVA)-- Anthony Ramsey, 51, is back behind bars after he was mistakenly released from the Southern Regional Jail Tuesday night.

Ramsey is charged with murder after allegedly killing 25 year old Brian Meadows in Alta last January.

Officials said Thursday it was an administrative or clerical error made at the jail that let Ramsey loose for more than 12 hours.

The West Virginia Regional Jail Authority told WVVA they accept responsibility for the incident, and are working to keep it from happening again.

Joe DeLong, the Executive Director, told WVVA in a phone interview that he saw there was enough information to have caught the error, once he looked into the situation. He admitted the error should not have been made, and said the WVRJA is looking into the process that caused it to happen.

"There was clearly a breakdown in communication," DeLong said. "We want to remove the possibility for future human error... We are doing a complete review [of the situation] to identify what happened."

DeLong added more training could be in the works for those involved.

Originally, there was confusion over a magistrate order sent to the jail to dismiss a case under Ramsey's name. As his case moved to circuit court, it was assigned a different number, meaning two cases existed for the same man, and under two different numbers.

As the case moved to the higher court, paperwork was filled out to clear out the lower court's file on Ramsey. The case's jump to a higher court was made when he was indicted last February.

Greenbrier County Prosecuting Attorney Patrick Via said according to procedure, the circuit court's jail commitment order was to be upheld even though one was being dismissed in a lower court. But Ramsey was released anyway.

"He had in fact not posted the bond that had been set for him," he said, "and I knew then that a mistake had been made."

Via said once authorities realized the error, they were quick to take action. A new warrant was swiftly issued, and Ramsey went with police without incident.

"The promptness with which it was dealt with should give some assurance to the community," he said.

Via said no criminal investigation is being made in the incident at this time.


LEWISBURG, W. Va (WVVA)-- The man facing murder charges in Greenbrier County is back behind bars after mistakenly being released from prison.

Police said Anthony Ramsey, 51, was erroneously released from the Southern Regional Jail Tuesday night.

He was out for more than 12 hours before deputies took him back into custody at a residence in Lewisburg around 10:30 Wednesday morning, said Greenbrier County Sheriff Jan Cahill.

Details about how the mix-up happened are still being investigated. It is undetermined at this time whether the jail was at fault or court documents were mistakenly delivered to release Ramsey.

The re-arrest was made without incident, said Cahill.

"Fortunately, he didn't escape or flee the area," he added Wednesday night. "He is now back in jail."

Ramsey is accused of fatally shooting Brian Meadows 25, at a trailer park in Alta on January 8th of this year. Click here to see WVVA's previous story on the alleged murder.

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