Escaped mental health center prisoner in custody in Elgin
Provided Photo | Elgin Police Dept.
ELGIN, Ill. (Sun-Times Media Wire) -
A prisoner who escaped from the Elgin Mental Health Center on Wednesday morning was taken back in to police custody after a cab driver stalled him.
Jesse Vega, 33, who is facing numerous domestic battery charges in Lake County, escaped while he was on the way to a Lake County court hearing for prior felony charges. He was handcuffed when he left the transport van he was in while it was stopped at a gas station near Dundee Avenue and Summit Street in Elgin about 8 a.m., police said in a statement.
Elgin police were assisted by SWAT members and more than 50 other officers for the search. About 4 p.m., an Elgin resident told police she heard noise in her backyard in the 400 block of Prospect Avenue and saw Vega hailing a cab, police said. The driver had known police were looking for him and stalled him until officers arrived, police said.
Vega is now charged with one felony count of escaping from authorities. He will appear in bond court Thursday morning in St. Charles.
The 33-year-old is already charged with the vicious beating of his girlfriend in the parking lot of Six Flags Great America in Gurnee on Sept. 29, 2013, according to Lake County prosecutors.
“She was taken immediately to (Advocate) Condell’s ICU and placed in a medically-induced coma because she had a fractured skull and was bleeding on the brain,” Cynthia Trujillo-Vargas, spokesperson for the Lake County State’s Attorney office, told the News-Sun.
Vega was charged with eight felonies: two counts each of aggravated domestic battery, aggravated battery causing great bodily harm and aggravated battery in a public place; and one count each of obstruction of justice and aggravated DUI.
He was scheduled for a fitness hearing to see if he was mentally fit to stand trial, Trujillo-Vargas said.
An arrest warrant was issued after he failed to show up in Lake County Circuit Court on Wednesday.
Vega was also named in a federal arrest warrant, Elgin Police Commander Glenn Theriault said, who said Vega was a Chicago resident. Lake County authorities said he lived in River Grove.