Authorities Mistakenly Release Murder Suspect Onto Calif. Streets and He's Still Out
An accused killer was accidentally released onto the streets of Los Angeles on Saturday and authorities there say he's still roaming free.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department detectives are searching for 37-year-old Steven Lawrence Wright, who was erroneously let out of an inmate reception center Saturday just before 1 p.m., according to a release.
Authorities did not discover their mistake until Sunday night. Now, days later, the alleged gangster remains on the run as police scramble to get him back behind bars.
Wright, an alleged member of the Crips street gang, had been behind bars since April 2011, following the gang-related shooting death of a 47-year-old man that same year in Pasadena, according to police.
At the time police said Wright belonged to the Altadena Block Crips.
"The Sheriff’s Department takes this matter very seriously and is fully engaged with returning Inmate Wright to custody, aggressively pursuing a number of leads as to his whereabouts," the LASD said.
"In addition, with all erroneous releases we will conduct a critical incident review to make necessary improvements to the system," the statement continued.
In 2013, Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department officials blamed a clerical error for the erroneous release of Johnny Mata, who was accused of two separate area murders. He was later picked up in Mexico.
Mata was the fourth LA County inmate mistakenly released that year. According to the LA Times, there were seven mistakes out of 142,000 releases in 2012.