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FBI fugitive captured during escape attempt in Durango area

Woman was in custody two days before making a break for it during hospital visit
Fugitive Corienne Anne Meyer was arrested in Durango by Durango Police Nov. 4, escaped custody after being taken from the La Plata County Jail to the hospital Nov. 6, and was subsequently recaptured 45 minutes later. (Courtesy of Durango Police Department)

Corienne Anne Meyer was taken from the La Plata County Jail to Mercy Hospital on Sunday after showing signs of a seizure at about 6:25 p.m. Minutes after arriving in the emergency room, she slipped away from a sheriff’s deputy and ran from the hospital.

As soon as Meyer’s restraints were removed so she could be examined, she leapt to her feet and ran out of the hospital and into the sage-covered fields between the hospital and U.S. Highway 160.

La Plata County sheriff’s deputies and the Durango Police Department set up a perimeter and began searching with the help of a K-9 unit and a Flight For Life helicopter. Officers found Meyer’s discarded orange jail top but not Meyer. The Durango Police Department then deployed a drone, which quickly found her lying flat in the brush.

What occurred next was caught on drone footage supplied to The Durango Herald by the Durango Police Department. Meyer then gets up and begins to run toward Wilson Gulch Drive as two sheriff’s deputies and their canine close in from the direction of the hospital. Meyer runs, then stops and crouches again, before making a final run onto Wilson Gulch.

That’s when Durango police officer Savannah Horne streaks into the drone footage running along Wilson Gulch toward Meyer, whom she then tackles and takes to the ground.

Reverse 911 calls were sent to nearby businesses and residents during the course of the search, which lasted 45 minutes from escape to capture.

Meyer was taken back to the emergency room for a medical evaluation before being returned to jail where she faces the additional charge of “escape,” a class 4 felony.

She was first arrested in Durango by Durango police on Friday after the department was alerted by the FBI that she had been sighted south of Camino del Rio. The FBI had been searching for Meyer, who was considered “armed and dangerous” for several weeks before the police apprehended her without incident.

Meyer was wanted for several crimes including but not limited to aggravated motor vehicle theft, violating a protective order multiple times, assault on law enforcement, child abuse and burglary.

Meyer’s is the fifth La Plata County Jail inmate to escape custody since 2018.

She is the first to escape after being transported to the hospital. In 2018, an inmate walked away while working in the community on a day pass. In 2019, a trustee climbed the jail’s barbed-wire topped perimeter fence and escaped with the help of family. In September 2021, a man being held for animal abuse climbed a wall and got past two fences, one wrapped in razor wire and the other topped in barbed wire, before being apprehended in the Animas River. And then in December 2021, another trustee, Elias Buck, jumped the perimeter fence and escaped. He was arrested 11 days later, but not before allegedly shooting a Farmington Police Department officer in the arm.

gjaros@durangoherald.com

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