By Sharna Johnson: Freedm New Mexico
A Texas prisoner mistakenly released from the jail in September is
back in custody after he was found having breakfast at a local shelter
Willie Windom was arrested without incident around 8 a.m. at the
Lighthouse Mission on Las Casillas Boulevard, according to Clovis
police Lt. Jim Schoeffel.
“A (citizen) walked in the front door of the police department and
said ‘You know that guy in the newspaper? He’s over at the Lighthouse
Mission,’” Schoeffel said, and within minutes, officers were on
location and had Windom in custody. Windom’s release was announced
Thursday in a Clovis News Journal story.
The 46-year-old man was released from the Curry County Adult
Detention Center by mistake Sept. 29 when a case against him in the 9th
Judicial District Court was dismissed.
Instead of being released, officials have said he should have been
returned to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice to complete a
12-year sentence on drug convictions.
Spokesman Jason Clark said TDCJ confirmed the arrest Thursday
morning and expects Windom will be transported back to Texas in the
“He’s been transported to the Curry County jail and is awaiting extradition,” Clark said.
TDCJ’s records and classification division discovered Tuesday during
a routine audit that it had been a year since Windom was sent to Clovis
to answer charges in a new case. As soon as the mistaken release was
discovered, a warrant was issued, Clark said previously.
Interim detention center administrator Audrey Barriga said Wednesday
jail administration was investigating to determine if Windom’s file at
the time of his release contained paperwork ordering he be detained
after the local court dismissed his case.
Barriga could not immediately be reached for comment Thursday.
Lighthouse Mission Director Richard Gomez said he had seen Windom at the mission a couple of times recently for meals.
“He would just come in and eat,” Gomez said, explaining the mission
serves breakfast and lunch daily to anyone in need of a meal.
“It went real good. The officers handled it very professionally,” Gomez said of Windom’s arrest.