Violent Mississippi inmates escape Christmas Day; stolen church van found in Texas

Published 6:44 am Monday, December 26, 2022

Two violent Mississippi prison inmates escaped custody Christmas morning and at least one of them is believed to have stolen a church van and drove it to Texas, police said.

Hinds County (Mississippi) Sheriff Tyree Jones reports that a church van reportedly stolen by at least one escaped detainee has been recovered in Texas.

Jones confirmed on Twitter that a white church van stolen from Belmont Church Christmas morning was recovered in a body of water in Anna, Texas, later Christmas Day.

Jones said a witness reported a white male pushing the van into the water. The van was later recovered and confirmed to be the van that was stolen.




Two inmates who have escaped a Mississippi prison should be considered dangerous, officials said.

Hinds County Sheriff Tyree Jones reported on social media that the two inmates escaped from the Raymond Detention Center.

Officials are looking for Traverro McElroy, 36, and Tyler Charles Payne, 31, were missing at this Christmas morning’s headcount.

McElroy was being held at the detention center on charges of murder and being in possession of a firearm, while Payne was being charged with armed carjacking/taking of a vehicle.

A church van was stolen from Belmont Church on Hwy 18 near the prison and the theft id believed to be connected to the two inmates.

The church van, a 2005 white Chevy, has Mississippi license plate #CB91395.

Anyone with information is asked to call 601-352-1521.