Greene County Sheriff reinstates inmate work program, makes changes

GREENE COUNTY, TN (WJHL)- In the wake of two inmates escaping from work release detail within days of each other, a Greene County program put on hold, has been reinstated with some changes.

Sheriff Pat Hankins said while inmates are back on the streets, they will only be working Monday through Friday now, as opposed to seven days a week.

“From now on, on weekends they don’t have as much supervision as they do during the week, so were not going to allow those to go out. I believe in this program, and I do think the inmates need to be out working instead of laying in the jail,” Sheriff Hankins said.

Hankins said he is also hoping those who are watching the inmates will be paying closer attention.

Pictured: Rex Allen Gray and Charles Lawson


“Greene County people are very passionate, and want to help people, and they forget they are inmates, and they will loan them their cell phone, and that’s where the trouble starts. We are watching them hopefully closer, the people that we are allowing to take them out, watching them closer than what they were,” Sheriff Hankins said.

Sheriff Hankins said they are still looking for two inmates who escaped from work detail, Rex Allen Gray, and Charles Lawson.

Rex Allen Gray is still believed to be in the Greene County area, while authorities have expanded their search for Lawson across state lines into North Carolina, as they said he could have family ties in that state.

If you have any information that could help the Greene County Sheriff’s Department bring these inmates back into custody, you are asked to call 423-798-1800 or call your local law enforcement agency.

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