Risky criminal on run in Henning, Tennessee after killing a officer

Tennessee Bureau of Investigations is searching for an

Curtis Ray Watson, 44, escaped from the West Tennessee State Penitentiary in Henning, Tenn., on Wednesday of this week, August 7.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has said he's a suspect in the death of Debra Johnson, a longtime corrections official who was found dead in her home on the prison grounds. Curtis Watson was found missing from a work detail at that time and a manhunt was initiated. Rausch said there have been no credible sightings of Watson.

Officials discovered the body of Debra Johnson, an employee of 38 years who oversaw the facilities in the western part of the state, around 11:30 Wednesday morning.

Watson is described by the authorities as 5 feet 11 inches tall and about 140 pounds.

Officers found the tractor about a mile and a half away from the prison, but no trace of Watson.

It was not immediately clear what contact Watson and Johnson had, but one official said it was "not uncommon for her to know the inmates who work on the property".

In addition to the search for Watson, at the request of 25 District Attorney General Mark Davidson, TBI Agents are investigating the homicide of Debra Johnson, 64, the West Tennessee Correctional Administrator for the Tennessee Department of Corrections. The inmate has brown eyes and a long gray beard, although officials say it may be possible that Watson could try to alter his appearance.

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The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has issued a Statewide Tennessee Blue Alert for Curtis Ray Watson.

TBI also released photos of Watson's many distinctive tattoos to help identify him.

Residents are asked to check trail cameras and other video surveillance cameras in the area for any sign of Watson, and to talk to their neighbors.

Watson is also now serving a 15-year sentence on a conviction of aggravated kidnapping out of Henry County.

Governor Bill Lee spoke at a press conference on Thursday, stating that Watson should be considered extremely risky.

Watson's sentence is expected to last until 2025 and he has served nearly six years of it, The Commercial Appeal reported.

TDOC Commissioner Parker: Watson had previously been convicted of aggravated child abuse in Carroll County. The total reward, adding on money from TBI, the FBI, the U.S. Marshals Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, now stands at $52,500, DeVine said. Call 911 or 1-800-TBI-FIND if you see him or have any information about where he might be.

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