Escaped Mississippi murder suspect killed by family he held hostage inside their home

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Rafael McCloud escaped from Warren County Jail in Vicksburg, Mississippi. The Warren County Sheriff's Office says McCloud is considered dangerous.

VICKSBURG, Mississippi — A murder suspect who escaped from a Mississippi jail was shot dead by a family he held hostage for several hours inside their home Thursday, police said.

After more than a week on the lam, Rafael Arnez McCloud was found dead in the bathtub of a home in Vicksburg, Mississippi, according to investigators.

The homeowner told police a man with a knife, later identified as McCloud, approached him around 4 a.m. Thursday as he and his 5-year-old son headed into the garage. The man forced his way into the home, according to the homeowner.

Hours later, the family used their own gun to fight back and escape.

Homeowner stabbed as he fought with suspect

A statement released by Vicksburg Police on Thursday evening gave details of the attack that ended with McCloud’s death.

“According to the homeowner,” police said, “he was bound in the bathroom by the suspect. The homeowner said he was able to free himself, fought with the suspect and sustained a stab wound to the back side of his shoulder.”

The man, his wife and his child were held in the bathroom, police said. The situation turned when the wife was allowed to leave the bathroom at some point, police said.

“The wife returned with a handgun and fired one shot believing to strike McCloud. After the husband’s bonds were cut by the wife, the husband took control of the weapon and fired additional shots striking McCloud,” police said. “The family then ran outside and flagged a motorist and asked them to call 911.”

When investigators arrived at the scene just after 7 a.m., they found McCloud in the tub with multiple gunshot wounds.

Suspect took jail employee hostage during escape

McCloud, 34, escaped last week after taking a jail employee hostage with a makeshift weapon, authorities have said.

Investigators warned they believed McCloud was armed and dangerous as they searched the area for him and offered a reward for his capture. Thursday morning they announced that the hunt for the fugitive had ended.

“This is certainly not the outcome that we wanted,” Warren County Sheriff Martin Pace said. “Our goal was to capture him safely and have him stand trial for the criminal charges he was in jail for. I am relieved that the family this morning was not injured more seriously than they were.”

The husband was being treated for his injuries, which were not life-threatening, Pace said. The wife and child were not injured, authorities said.

The experience was “very traumatic” for the family, Vicksburg Police Capt. Sandra Williams said, adding that exhausted investigators who had been searching for McCloud are happy the hunt has come to an end.

“There’s no telling how many lives were saved,” she said.

Charged with capital murder

McCloud had been in custody on charges in the killing of 69-year-old Sharon Wilson, whose body was found in an abandoned hospital in late June, according to the Vicksburg Police Department.

She had been hit in the head and beaten.

Investigators have said McCloud admitted to kidnapping Wilson from her home and dumping her body in the grass behind the hospital.

He was charged with capital murder, sexual battery, rape, arson, home invasion, weapon possession by a felon, grand larceny auto theft and burglary in connection with the slaying. He pleaded not guilty in January.


  • Malai

    Kudos to that brave family! And wow the wife fired the first shot? A true soldier there. I’m so happy they all were ok! That wicked man got his karma!

  • truth hurts

    That is fantastical. There’s your capital punishment. The grandma heraped and murdered is looking down laughing hera ss off.

  • 2ECOND

    “โ€œThis is certainly not the outcome that we wanted,โ€ Warren County Sheriff Martin Pace said. โ€œOur goal was to capture him safely and have him stand trial for the criminal charges he was in jail for.”
    screw the “good feelings”, pos got EXACTLY what he deserved, this needs to happen more often

  • A yooper

    What a great feel good story. A bit traumatic for homeowners but everything turned out well! Saddest part are the comments by the Sheriff. What’s the problem here? The suspect admitted to the crimes. He went to great lengths to avoid life in prison. A week on the run & he picked well as to which home to invade. A bit of self inflicted capital punishment. Saved the good people of Mississippi lots money!!

  • Fred

    Whoo Hooo!! (Do the happy dance)…
    Score 1 for the honest citizens, big zero for the scum bags……
    Gotta love those wireless handheld devices that go bang! Everybody should have one!

  • Joe

    So if this family didn’t own guns they could have been the ones killed instead the this scum. Take that gun haters!

    • One for stand your grounds

      Exactly! !! I still never understood what taking our legal guns back and still illegal guns out on the street was going to necessarily achieve ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

  • Joe

    That wasn’t the outcome they wanted but they couldn’t even keep him in custody.It was mentioned to be,thank GOD the family is safe an my prayers go out to them.

  • imcrazy

    But,But,But he was a good boy. He was starting to turn his life around. Now his mama and papa are going to sue for unlawful death.

  • MikeHunt

    Piece of sh1t is dead! NO WASTED TAX DOLLARS on ‘3 hots n a cot’ for BS rehab. We need more happy endings like this.

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