LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- An 18-year-old is back in jail after police say he violated the terms of a plea agreement.
Markel Rice was one of six teens charged as adults in the beating death of 62-year-old Lonnie Bard. Bard was disabled and found savagely beaten near South 22nd Street and Stone Alley in July 2017. Rice was offered a plea agreement in exchange for a lesser charge and home incarceration and agreed to testify against one of his co-defendants.
Travion Miley was tried and convicted in December, but prosecutors say Rice was a no-show. Metro Corrections officials received an alert in October that Rice had violated the terms of the plea agreement by cutting off the ankle monitor he was required to wear.
"The public needs to know that we take this very seriously," said Metro Corrections Deputy Director Steve Durham.
Durham said there are currently more than 570 inmates on house arrest, and all of them are monitored 24/7.
"The very second that device was cut, whatever he used to cut that strap, it sent an alert into Metro Corrections," Durham said.
Durham said there was an attempt to reach Rice by phone and an alert was sent to the ankle monitor.
"And so we'll ping that device. It sends a tone out so that anybody that is in range of it can hear that," Durham said. "They couldn't get a hold of this particular individual, so they made a trip out to the house to try to locate him."
According to a Metro Police Citation, "the monitoring device was on the back porch," and Rice was on the run.
A warrant was then issued for his arrest, Durham said.
After three months on the loose, Rice was arrested Friday morning. Despite the current accusations, Rice is not automatically disqualified from the diversion program.
"You have to have a hearing and the judge makes a finding," said Jeff Cooke, the assistant commonwealth's attorney. "And if the court decides that he, yes, violated the agreement, then he would be removed from diversion and would become a convicted felon at that point."
Rice's new charges include second-degree escape, tampering with a prisoner monitoring device and theft. He is being held at Metro Corrections on a $15,000 bond and is due in court in February.
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