Murder Suspect Somehow Escapes Packed Courtroom, Leaves His Shackles and Prison Clothes Behind
A murder suspect shed his shackles in a packed Florida courtroom Friday, jumped from the jury box and fled the courthouse, leaving just a set of handcuffs and his prison clothes behind.
A massive manhunt was launched for 22-year-old Dayonte Resiles, who's accused of stabbing a woman to death in 2014. On Saturday morning, authorities confirmed Resiles is still on the lam.
"He should turn himself in," his lawyer, H. Dohn Williams, Jr. told InsideEdition.com Saturday. "I don't want him or anyone else to get hurt."
Resiles had been escorted to Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale on Friday morning for a pre-trial conference. Once inside the courtroom, he was guarded by two unarmed bailiffs who were also watching over several other defendants, authorities said. Somehow, he managed to break free and escape the room.
His attorney said he was on the way to the courtroom at the time and arrived to find mayhem.
"I was totally shocked," Williams said, calling the escape "completely out of character."
Surveillance cameras caught the moment Resiles raced down the hallway before escaping through a side door at 9.34 a.m. Photos by JAABLOG also show handcuffs and the man’s striped inmate jumpsuit left behind on the ground.
"We believe he defeated the perimeter before it even got in place," Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel said at a Friday press conference. "We believe he exited through the north end of the courthouse."
It is not known how he managed to escape his shackles, but a prosecutor told affiliate WSVN that a woman inside the courtroom had stood up and clapped loudly -- perhaps providing a distraction.
"He was shackled appropriately as far as wearing a waist shackle," Israel added. "Whether or not it was secure, we’ll find out as we investigate."
Following the escape, the courthouse was evacuated. Helicopters and dogs searched the area before the courthouse opened to the public a couple of hours later.
"We will leave no stone unturned," Israel said. "We will do everything we can to bring him back into custody safely, quickly and efficiently."
Resiles is believed to be wearing a white T-shirt and black shorts.
He had been charged with first-degree murder in the death of 59-year-old married mom of two Jill Su, who was found dead inside her home in 2014. Investigators say Resiles forced his way into the house to burglarize it before killing Su.
Resiles, a father, is facing the death penalty in the case. He has pleaded not guilty to the charges.
His lawyer said he was shocked by the latest turn of events.
"He was always softly spoken, a complete gentleman," Williams said. "At least the man I knew."
Police were guarding the Su family's home following the suspect's escape.