Sheriff: Zavala release was avoidable

Sheriff: Zavala release was avoidable

An avoidable oversight led to the mistaken release of a detention center inmate, according to Sheriff Kelly Rowe.

Jailers received notification of Ernest Ray Zavala's state parole violation charge being lifted, triggering his release. 

What they missed was a detainer from  U.S. Marshals. 

The documents had been received but were not filed accordingly. 

"This was a terrible situation and it was avoidable. It shouldn't have happened. The fact that it did and the reaction and action taken by not only my staff but all law enforcement community in Lubbock to get him back into custody as quickly as we possibly could just demonstrates our commitment to this community's safety," Rowe said.

Zavala was captured in Hobbs over the weekend.        

U.S. Marshals have also arrested a woman who is accused of lying to investigators during the search for Zavala.   

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