Wednesday, July 24, 2024

So, how exactly did that Hampstead man escape Surf City Police Department custody?

Christopher Scott Tew-Creech escaped custody while being transferred from Surf City Police to the Pender County jail.

Christopher Scott Tew-Creech, 26, of Hampstead was arrested earlier this week. He then escaped and remained at large until a multi-agency manhunt recaptured him. (Port City Daily photo | Courtesy Pender County Sheriff's Office)
Christopher Scott Tew-Creech, 26, of Hampstead was arrested earlier this week. He then escaped and remained at large until a multi-agency manhunt recaptured him. (Port City Daily photo | Courtesy Pender County Sheriff’s Office)

SURF CITY — On Thursday Surf City Police arrested a young man on drug charges and, while the suspect was being transferred to the Pender County jail, he somehow escaped — remaining at large for the better part of the day until a multi-agency manhunt recaptured him.

The 26-year-old Hampstead resident, Christopher Scott Tew-Creech, was initially arrested early on Thursday, August 2, for active drug warrants from the Onslow County Sheriff’s Office. An officer took Tew-Creech to a Pender County magistrate, which is apparently where things went wrong.

Surf City Police Chief Ron Shanahan acknowledged today that Tew-Creech was left unattended while in police custody.

According to Shanahan, “we have found that our arresting officer failed to follow proper confinement procedures during this arrest while at the Pender County magistrate’s office.”

Shanahan further explained, “all of my officers have access to the Intoxilyzer room at the jail, which is a confined room. The arresting officer left Tew-Creech handcuffed, but unattended in the lobby for a short period of time when he realized he had fled. In addition, it was later found that a release order was never issued to the officer during this process.”

Shanahan said the “serious matter” would be handled internally to prevent any similar incidents from happening in the future. According to Shanahan, the internal investigation is ongoing and no disciplinary action has been taken at the current time.

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