ORANGE (CBSLA) — Authorities said Friday that the 15-year-old who escaped from an Orange juvenile detention facility, where he was being held on suspicion of murdering his mother, has been captured and returned to custody.
Ike Souzer had been in custody since 2017. He escaped some time after midnight Thursday.
Surveillance video showed Souzer favoring his leg as he made his escape. Officials believe he may have suffered a cut to his left leg while escaping from Orange County Juvenile Hall.
When he was found, police said he had several puncture wounds to the leg.
The boy was 13 when he was arrested in May 2017 on suspicion of stabbing his mother, Barbara Scheuer-Souzer, in Garden Grove. She was able to tell police she was attacked by her son, before she died at a hospital.
Police released surveillance video Friday afternoon appearing to show Souzer crouching behind shrubs and making his way from the facility.
Ike, who has mild autism, was found at a shopping center nearby after the stabbing. His name wasn’t released at the time of the murder.
Authorities acknowledge it was unusual to release the name of a juvenile suspect.
“Due to the nature of his charges that he’s in custody fore, we thought it prudent to let the citizens know of who was out,” Orange County sheriff Capt. Mike Peters said.
Probation officials say Ike got out of a locked room and jumped a fence to escape, and ran northbound on City Drive. He turned up missing during a random room check, and 60 officers and other officials began searching for him within minutes of the discovery.
Ike was described as a white male, about 6 feet tall, 200 pounds and last seen wearing a white shirt and red pants.
The probation department, which oversees the facility Souzer escaped from, was assisted by the Orange County Sheriff’s Department in the search.
KCAL9’s Nicole Comstock reported Friday night that Souzer’s sister, Berlin, has come to his defense.
She messaged Comstock via Facebook to say the media was only telling “one side of the story and making [her brother] out to be someone he’s not.”
Berlin added, “He has gone through a lot. Mental and physical abuse. He’s a troubled teen that needs help. He’s not dangerous whatsoever. What he did was self-defense. She beat on him daily.”
Authorities did not know how Souzer occupied his time for the 21 hours he remained free.