San Francisco

Eyewitnesses Describe Moments When Escaped Inmates Taken Into Custody

After two dangerous fugitives were captured in San Francisco after breaking out of an Orange County jail eight days earlier, eye witnesses were speaking out about the capture Saturday.

"They were saying: 'Get down, get down,'" Larry Gray said.

After a citizen spotted the parked getaway van and Hossein Nayeri, the 37-year-old fugitive fled with officers running close behind. Gray said he saw the foot pursuit end.

Gray said when Nayeri was told to get on the ground, he complied.

Kevin Marks, a second eye witness to the dramatic end of the jail escape, said he saw a van with fogged up windows.

It was outside the Whole Foods grocery store where he watched San Francisco officers approach the van where Jonathan Tieu, the other 20-year-old fugitive, was sitting in the passenger seat.

"The window was only partially rolled down and then very rapidly he's out the vehicle," Marks said. "Didn't seem like anyone was stressed out. I didn't see any guns drawn. It was like, no big deal."

San Francisco police officers discovered ammunition inside the stolen white van that the fugitives used to elude law enforcement.

"When we conducted a search of the van, we did find 380 rounds inside, ammunition rounds," Grace Gatpandan of San Francisco police, said. "We did not locate a weapon at this time."

The three fugitives made it to the Bay Area from the Orange County jail Tuesday night at the latest.

They checked into a motel in San Jose, and checked out Thursday morning.

Residents surmised why the inmates chose the Haight District in San Francisco.

"Because you can blend in pretty easily here," Debra Adler said.

Nayeri and Tieu broke out of a maximum security Orange County jail Jan. 22 along with fellow inmate Bac Duong, 43, allegedly with the help of a 44-year-old Lake Forest female teacher who printed Google Maps of the jail out for the inmates, investigators said.

Duong surrendered to police in Santa Ana Friday.

Nayeri is accused of participating in an attack, including torture, against a Newport Beach resident who ran a licensed marijuana dispensary in Santa Ana. Tieu faces murder and attempted murder charges in connection with a gang hit. Duong faces an attempted murder charge and was being held without bail on an immigration hold pending a possible federal deportation hearing. 

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