ORLANDO, Fla. - A man who escaped from an Orange County deputy earlier this month has been arrested in Georgia, Channel 9 has learned.
Willie Hollis was with his girlfriend when he was taken into custody in Fairburn, Ga., just outside of Atlanta. He's awaiting extradition back to Orange County.
Officials said he and his girlfriend were tracked down by U.S. marshals.
Deputies said Hollis went to the courthouse for a violation of probation hearing to discuss his past false imprisonment and grand theft charges.
After being released by the judge, an observant Orange County sheriff’s deputy remembered seeing the 31-year-old driving through the jail parking lot before the hearing and recognized him.
“When he arrived at the jail, they realized this person should not have been driving,” said Jeff Williamson, with the Orange County’s Sheriff’s Office. “He's a habitual traffic offender. He was then arrested for a traffic violation charge.”
Authorities said the unnamed deputy arrested and cuffed Hollis and sat him in the holding area but he quickly fled the compound and then sprinted to a vehicle that appeared to be waiting for him outside, possibly driven by his girlfriend.
The Sheriff's Office told WFTV it will review its practices to see if improvements can be made when deputies deal with people inside the building.
Williamson said the department is looking into whether the arresting deputy failed to follow procedures.
“No one was happy about what happened that day, to see a guy running out of custody,” Williamson said. “We’re very relieved to get him off the streets.”
Hollis has been arrested for over two dozen offenses in Orange County dating back several years.
In 2012, Hollis was accused of kidnapping his wife. His criminal history also includes arrests for child abuse, sexual battery and drug possession with the intent to sell.