Murder trial starts for jail escapee

Published On: May 21 2012 01:18:43 PM EDT
Updated On: May 21 2012 01:36:32 PM EDT
Doni Brown and Timothy Fletcher

Putnam County Sheriff's Office released new booking photos after Doni Brown and Timothy Fletcher were recaptured on April 18, 2009.

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. -

Jury selection began Monday for a former Putnam County jail escapee accused of killing a woman in 2009.

Timothy Fletcher is standing trial in St Johns County court in the 2009 killing of 66-year-old Helen Googe.

The case was moved because of pretrial publicity.

Fletcher, of Welaka, and Doni Brown, of Satsuma, escaped from the jail April 15, 2009. Googe's body was found hours after the breakout.

The two men were caught days later when deputies acting on a tip chased them down on foot and tackled them.
Helen Googe Investigators said the men made it as far away as Kentucky before returning to the Putnam County area after their escape.

The men are accused of stealing a truck and car in Florida, a car in Kentucky and a car in Tennessee.

The cellmates were able to escape the jail by ripping out a sink and toilet combination from the wall using a jack Fletcher apparently stole from a county van while returning from a court appearance, investigators said.

They crawled through the hole in the wall, went out a door to the outside, investigators said, and then they dug under one fence and were able to get through a second one.

Brown had been arrested Aug. 17, 2008, and charged with robbery with a firearm. Fletcher was arrested March 3, 2009, on three counts of failure to appear on an aggravated assault charge.

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