UPDATE: 12:15 P.M. THURSDAY
COLUMBIA, SC (WBTW) – The SC Department of Juvenile Justice says Nicholas Rios has been captured after escaping from a facility in Columbia.
The 16-year-old was seen near the corner of Fairfield Road and Buckner Road on the north side of Columbia between 11:30 and 11:45 a.m. Thursday, the SCDJJ said.
Rios was taken into custody shortly after and is being checked by medical crews.
“A tip called in by the public led to him being located,” SCDJJ also said.
15th Circuit Solicitor Jimmy Richardson told News13 Rios will be transported back to the SCDJJ, who will decide whether or not he will be charged as an adult for the escape. The escape charge is punishable by one to 15 years and if he is convicted, Rios would serve that sentence on top of his current 35-year sentence.
Rios will turn 17 next month, according to Richardson. Once 17, Rios can be transferred to prison, but the SCDJJ may hold him for an additional six months if they choose to.
COLUMBIA, SC (WBTW) – A 16-year-old who pleaded guilty and was sentenced in December for the attack of an elderly Surfside Beach woman, has escaped from a juvenile facility in Columbia, according to the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice.
Nicholas Rios is believed to have left the DJJ Broad River Road Complex on Wednesday evening. SLED air and ground units are actively searching for him, along with other law enforcement officials.
Rios is 5’2″, 145 lbs and was last seen wearing a white crew neck t-shirt, khaki pants & black shoes, according to officials. Rios is serving 35 years for criminal sexual conduct.
News13 reported in December that Rios pleaded guilty to attempted murder, burglary, criminal sexual assault and kidnapping.
The victim in the initial case was left with ‘extensive injuries’ after an attack at her home, according to the 15th Circuit Solicitor’s Office.
Officials urge citizens in the Columbia area to use caution & immediately call 911 if you see Rios.
The Broad River Road Complex is the Department of Juvenile Justice’s long-term commitment facility, according to its website. The complex offers programs for boys and girls of all backgrounds and needs, including programs for youth sex offenders.
News13 was the first to report this developing story. Count on us for updates.