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Man Who Escaped From Jail Commits Suicide
Updated August 23, 2016 9:15 AM | Filed under: Crime
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denny kellems.jpg

(GREENCASTLE) - A French Lick man who had escaped from the Orange County Jail and was captured by Indiana State Police has reportedly committed suicide.

According to Indiana Department of Correction officials, 33-year-old Denny Kellems, Jr. was booked into the Putnamville Correctional Facility in Greencastle four days ago.

Officials say Kellems was found late Sunday afternoon hanging by a bed sheet tied to a vent in his single cell located in the disciplinary restricted housing unit.

Staff attempted to perform CPR on Kellems but their attempts failed and Kellems was pronounced dead at 3:40 p.m.

Kellems was serving time for unlawful possession of a firearm by a violent felon. His earliest possible release date was January 12, 2017.

Kellems escaped from the Orange County Jail sometime between 10 p.m. Tuesday, August 2 and and 2 a.m. Wednesday, August 3 escaping through the sally port. It is unclear how Kellems left the jail undetected.

After his escape he went on a crime spree. Kellems confronted a woman at the Riley Oil Co. gas station near the jail. He was accused to attacking her and stealing her vehicle. He was also accused of raping a woman he knew that same day.

Officers with the Paoli Police Department were able to locate the stolen vehicle in French Lick and contacted the State Police for K9 assistance.

As officers were patrolling the area looking for Kellems, Paoli Officer Brandon Mesarosh located Kellems near the Edgewood Apartments in French Lick.

Kellems approached Mesarosh while he began stabbing himself in the throat.

Senior Trooper Robbie Lambert, who had medical supplies with him, provided treatment to Kellems until emergency medical services arrived.

Kellems was transported to IU Health in Paoli for treatment. He was then taken to INDOC's Reception Diagnostic Center in Plainfield and later transferred to Putnamville.

Prior to his death, the Orange County Prosecutor's Office did not charge Kellems for the escape incident, or any of the alleged crimes that reportedly took place during his time on the run.

Kellems' official cause of death is under investigation by the Putnam County Coroner's Office.

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