Inmate escapes Douglas County jail

Inmate escapes Douglas County jail

ROSEBURG, Ore. - A man with a history of fleeing police has escaped from jail.

Deputies at the Douglas County Jail discovered Thomas Ivan Grimes, 32, missing from his cell at 6 a.m. Friday.

Investigators are working to determine when and how exactly Grimes was able to get out of the jail, the sheriff's office said.

Grimes was being held in jail on several warrants charging him with Attempt to Elude, Unauthorized Use of a Vehicle, Reckless Driving, Recklessly Endangering and Possession of a Stolen Vehicle.

Grimes was also being held on a warrant out of Lane County and a Lane County Parole Board hold. 

Grimes is described as 5-foot-8, 150 lbs, with a shaved head and hazel eyes.

He was last seen wearing a white sleeveless t-shirt and dark color jeans.

If anyone has information as to his whereabouts or believes they have seen Grimes they should contact 911.

Do not attempt to contact Grimes, he may be dangerous.

In December 2009, Grimes took off in a stolen car from Springfield, barreling head-on into traffic as deputies tried to take him into custody on a warrant, the sheriff's office said.

Authorities in Douglas County took Grimes into custody in January of this year after another car chase when police in Sutherlin attempted to stop a car for a minor traffic violation. Instead of pulling over, the driver - later identified as Grimes - sped off, reaching speeds over 100 miles an hour.

Officers followed the car into Oakland, where the driver ditched the vehicle and ran on foot.

Sergeant Joseph Felix of the Sutherlin Police Department said officers were looking for the suspect when he noticed the skirting on a mobile home unit was displaced.

"I could smell him before I could see him," Felix told KPIC News in January.

Felix said the smell of alcohol was very strong, and he eventually located Grimes underneath the mobile home and took him into custody.