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Man charged with helping Limestone County work-release inmate escape

Published: Dec. 6, 2021 at 5:35 PM CST
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LIMESTONE CO., Ala. (WAFF) - A man accused of helping a Limestone County work-release inmate escape from her job site Thursday morning, is now facing several charges.

Investigators say at approximately 10:23 a.m., Ashley Lynn Gatlin walked off the job site at Eagles Diner on Elm St. She was seen getting into a white pickup truck and leaving the property. According to LCSO, 51-year-old Michael Scott Kennedy was discovered to be a possible suspect after an investigation into Gatlin’s escape.

Work release inmate Ashley Lynn Gatlin
Work release inmate Ashley Lynn Gatlin(Limestone County Sheriff's Office)

Deputies performed a traffic stop on Kennedy after locating his pickup on 7th Avenue and Mooresville Road in Ardmore. He was found to have an active warrant out of Cullman County.

During the search of the vehicle, investigators found Kennedy to be in possession of methamphetamine, marijuana, drug paraphernalia, and a loaded pistol. Deputies also located an address on a sheet of paper which they say indicated the location of Gatlin. Deputies responded to the address and after a brief stand-off, Gatlin was taken back into custody. Gatlin was found to be in possession of methamphetamine and an unknown substance.

Gatlin was charged with possession of a controlled substance and promoting prison contraband. Additionally, Gatlin will face a charge of escape in the second degree. Kennedy was charged with possession of a concealed weapon without a permit, possession of a controlled substance, possession of marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia. He will also be charged with facilitating escape in the second degree.

Both suspects are being held in the Limestone County Detention Center.

Statement from Limestone County Sheriff, Joshua McLaughlin:

“I would like to commend the swift and thorough work of my department with this capture. I would also like to thank City of Athens Police Department, Ardmore Police Department, Madison County Sheriff’s Office, Giles County (TN) Sheriff’s Office, and Lincoln County (TN) Sheriff’s Office for their outstanding assistance in this case. We continue to be extremely thankful for the assistance from our many law enforcement partners across the region.”

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