The second of three West Baton Rouge Parish work-release inmates who during an escape allegedly attacked and kidnapped a man outside a Baton Rouge hotel in November was booked Tuesday into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison, authorities said.
Xavier Criff, 27, along with Emanuel Ray Jones and a third inmate who has not been publicly identified, escaped from the West Baton Rouge Detention Center and allegedly ambushed a man in the parking lot of the Radisson Hotel on Acadian Thruway, police said.
The three, along with 22-year-old Angelina M. Hooks, a Pennsylvania woman also accused in the attack, robbed the man at gunpoint and beat him after Hooks lured him outside the hotel, according to Baton Rouge police reports.
The inmates then beat the victim, stuffed him into the trunk of his car and drove off, police say. According to an arrest warrant issued for Criff in January, Hooks told police she saw Criff beat the victim with a handgun and use a stun gun on him after he tried escaping from the trunk.
The victim told police he heard Jones talking about “finding a place to go kill him” and talked about burning the car, according to a report, and managed to escape only after another driver crashed into the back of his vehicle near the intersection of River Road and Brightside Lane, popping open the trunk. It remains unclear just what sort of relationship Hooks had with the inmates.
Criff was being held at the Bossier Parish Jail before being booked Tuesday into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison on counts of armed robbery, second-degree kidnapping, carjacking, aggravated battery and felon in possession of a firearm. Criff pleaded guilty in 19th Judicial District Court in July 2014 to one count of burglary and was sentenced to three years in prison.
The West Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office didn’t immediately respond to questions about Criff’s work-release assignment at the time of his arrest.
Two West Baton Rouge sheriff’s deputies working at the work-release facility were suspended without pay after an internal probe by the Sheriff’s Office discovered the three inmates’ absence never showed up on any paperwork because one of the newer guards was allowing another inmate to perform his routine head counts.
Jones, Criff’s co-defendant, was booked Feb. 2 into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison on the same counts as Criff — after the state Department of Public Safety and Corrections mistakenly released Jones from Elayn Hunt Correctional Center in late January. A probation officer later located Jones at his last known address in Covington.
Hooks, who, the victim told police, stood and watched as the inmates beat him, was booked Jan. 22 on counts of principal to armed robbery, principal to carjacking, principal to second-degree kidnapping, principal to aggravated battery and principal to simple battery.
Police said Hooks admitted to her role in the attack in text messages she exchanged with the victim.
Follow Bryn Stole on Twitter, @BrynStole.