HILLIARD, Ohio - An escaped inmate who barricaded himself inside a Hilliard home and took a woman hostage surrendered Monday afternoon.
Billy Jack Fitzmorris surrendered shortly before 4 p.m.
Fitzmorris escaped custody early Monday inside a Youngstown hospital and was barricaded inside a Hilliard home for nearly three hours with a female hostage inside. The events in Hilliard took place after Fitzmorris allegedly robbed two Columbus-area banks and carjacked a vehicle.
Fitzmorris , who has ties to Columbus, escaped the hospital while he was under observation. Police said Fitzmorris, 34, pulled out a shank and overpowered a guard, stealing a gun and uniform.
A man who police said was Fitzmorris robbed banks in Powell and Upper Arlington before he was chased and escaped the car he was driving in Hilliard. He then ran inside a two-story home that had been converted into offices, located at 5275 Norwich St.
A man safely jumped out a first-floor window at about 1:45 p.m. and was escorted away by officers, police said.
According to police, Fitzmorris was inside the home and took a female hostage. SWAT team members were inside the home and cleared the basement and the first floor. Fitzmorris was believed to be hiding on the second floor with the hostage, police said. A SWAT team negotiator was inside the home, police said.
The Hilliard City School District placed all schools in the city under lockdown. No students were being allowed to leave any of the district's buildings.
The lockdown ended shortly after 4 p.m. when police announced Fitzmorris was taken into custody.
Fitzmorris, who has relatives in Columbus, was convicted on robbery, burglary and stolen property charges.
The Corrections Corporation of America, the company that runs the prison where Fitzmorris was being held, said he held two nurses and four other officers before fleeing.
The company added that Fitzmorris had been held at the correctional center since Feb. 23 and was taken to the hospital on Saturday for medical treatment.
Fitzmorris was first spotted in central Ohio Monday at about 12:45 p.m., when he allegedly robbed First Citizens Bank, located at 9595 Sawmill Parkway, in Powell.
A short time later, Ohio Savings Bank, located at 1818 West Lane Ave., in Upper Arlington, was robbed. Police said that they believe Fitzmorris was behind the robbery.
Brian Baptist of the U.S. Marshal's Office said that Fitzmorris allegedly robbed the bank in Powell before.
Police pursued a Chevrolet Impala that authorities said Fitzmorris stole, in portions of Upper Arlington and along Interstate 70, before exiting at Hilliard-Rome Road.
He then drove to downtown Hilliard when he was spotted fleeing the vehicle and breaking into the home.
Fitzmorris was one of two men arrested in January 1997 after he allegedly tried to burglarize a Northwest Side apartment and attempted to escape in a carjacked vehicle, police said.
According to police, Fitzmorris broke into a unit at the Camden Place Luxury Apartments. He then allegedly pushed a man from a Jeep behind Kittle's Home Furnishings, located at 5600 Britton Parkway, near Interstate 270 and Tuttle Crossing Boulevard, in an attempt to flee, police said.
Then, Fitzmorris allegedly led Columbus police on a chase that ended when he lost control of the vehicle at Post Road and U.S. Route 33.
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