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2 Tenn. fugitives apprehended in Pompano Beach after hours-long manhunt

POMPANO BEACH, Fla. – Two inmates who escaped from the Northwest Correctional Complex in Tiptonville, Tenn., set off an intensive search in east Pompano Beach on Sunday.

Tennessee Department of Corrections said that one of the fugitives, Robert Lee Brown, had been apprehended in Florida around 8 p.m. and a stolen red pickup truck recovered.

Around 9 p.m. Broward Sheriff’s Office said the second man, Christopher Osteen, was taken into custody. Osteen could be seen on a gurney being put into a Broward Fire Rescue vehicle after his capture.

Information from Broward County Sheriff’s Office obtained by Local 10 at the scene was that an automated license plate reader registered a truck in the area and that is when deputies converged on the 1200 block of North Riverside Drive. The search centered in that area and onto U.S. 1.

Christopher Osteen, left, and Robert Lee Brown, right, were taken into custody in Pompano Beach by Broward Sheriff's Office deputies Sunday. The two were wanted fugitives from Tennessee. (Tennessee Department of Corrections)

According to ABC affiliate WKRN-TV, Tennessee Department of Corrections officers discovered that 36-year-old Brown of Putnam County and 34-year-old Osteen of Madison County were missing just before 8:30 a.m. after an emergency recount on Friday.

The two men were traveling in a stolen 2009 red Chevrolet Silverado extended cab pickup truck with Tennessee license plate 050WJQ. The truck was reported stolen after a man was found tied up in his Tennessee home Saturday around 2:38 a.m.

WKRN reported on Friday that the two inmates kidnapped a Fulton County Kentucky Highway Department employee from a boat ramp on the Mississippi River. Around 1:52 p.m. the employee was located.

Brown was serving an 18-year sentence for aggravated rape and his sentence was set to expire in 2022.

Osteen was serving an 8-year sentence for burglary. His sentence was set to expire in 2023.

It is unclear why the two men were in the Pompano Beach area.

Currently, they are being held in the Broward County Main Jail.

About the Author:

Michelle F. Solomon is the podcast producer/reporter/host of Local 10's original, true crime podcast The Florida Files and a digital journalist for Local 10.com.