Calif. inmate at county correctional firefighting camp escapes from custody

State correctional officials said that minimum-security inmate Edgar Benitez, 25, was missing from his assigned housing at Growlersburg Conservation Camp


Vincent Moleski
The Sacramento Bee

EL DORADO, Calif. — An inmate at an El Dorado correctional camp used to house fire crews escaped from custody Saturday night, according to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

In a news release, state correctional officials said that minimum-security inmate Edgar Benitez, 25, was missing from his assigned housing at Growlersburg Conservation Camp at an 11 p.m. head count.

Photo/CDCR

The camp, near Georgetown and jointly run by CDCR and Cal Fire, is home to inmate firefighting hand crews that are deployed to battle wildfires across California.

Benitez was last seen at 10 p.m. Saturday during a head count. Correctional officers searched the camp grounds after it was discovered he was missing. Cal Fire and other local law enforcement agencies are assisting in the search.

He was received from Los Angeles County on Dec. 26, 2017, sentenced to nine years in prison on a charge of driving while intoxicated and causing injury or death, according to CDCR.

Officials say that if Benitez is spotted, 911 should be called immediately. He is described as 5 feet, 7 inches tall, and about 170 pounds with black hair and brown eyes.

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(c)2021 The Sacramento Bee (Sacramento, Calif.)

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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