UPDATE 3/26/15 10:30 a.m.
Rocco Zuccaro appeared for arraignment Thursday morning on a felony escape charge in Lewis County, WV Magistrate Court.
His bond has been set at $200,000 and is being held at the North Central Regional Jail. Zuccaro will be returned to the Northern Regional Jail as soon as possible.
A preliminary hearing will be held within the next 10 days.UPDATE FROM WV STATE POLICE:
In a post on the West Virginia State Police Facebook page, they announced the capture of Rocco Zuccaro:
“On Wednesday, March 25, 2015, at approximately 10:49 p.m., Sergeant J. M. Menendez, of the Elkins Detachment of the West Virginia State Police, apprehended Mr. Rocco Zuccaro in the McWhorter area of Harrison County, near a natural gas facility. Mr. Zuccaro was found hiding in tall grass.
Troopers, who had responded from detachments throughout the State, were searching the area due to multiple sightings of Mr. Zuccaro by the public.
The West Virginia State Police would like to thank the public and numerous media outlets for their assistance in sharing information concerning Mr. Zuccaro’s escape.
The West Virginia State Police would also like to thank the West Virginia National Guard, the Lewis County Sheriff’s Department, the Harrison County Sheriff’s Department, the Weston Police Department, the West Virginia Natural Resource Police, the United States Marshal Service, and multiple other law enforcement agencies who assisted in the search. Mr. Zuccaro will be lodged in the North Central Regional Jail to await arraignment on a felony escape charge.”
UPDATE 3/25/15 9:50 p.m.:
The West Virginia State Police reported Zuccaro was recently spotted at the Jane Lew Truck Stop on Interstate 79.
Please call the West Virginia State Police or 911 if you have information.
At a press conference Wednesday, West Virginia State Police said Sharpe Hospital is understaffed by more than 90 people. Although they did not think that was a direct cause for the escape, it probably could have helped prevent it.
Lt. Michael Baylous released the following statement on the search:
“I continue to receive numerous requests for daily updates on the search for Rocco Zuccaro. There are no updates at this time. We continue to follow up on leads; however, we are not willing to disclose which areas we are concentrating our search efforts, for obvious reasons.”
A murder suspect who escaped from a Weston-area hospital Monday evening remains on the run, according to police.
Rocco Zuccaro, 30, of Burgettstown, Pennsylvania escaped from a William R. Sharpe, Jr. Hospital around 4:20 p.m. Monday by reportedly scaling a wall. He was undergoing a mental evaluation.
Brooke County Sheriff Chuck Jackson considers Zuccaro dangerous.
A warrant for escape has been signed for Zuccaro in magistrate court. This is a felony charge and he could face five years in jail.
The West Virginia State Police and Lewis County Sheriff’s Department are heading up the search for Zuccaro. He is a white male, about 6 feet tall, weighing approximately 170 pounds. He has glasses, dark hair and a mustache. At the time of his escape, he was wearing black pants with a rip on the left pant leg, and a dark blue and black pullover shirt.
Police are unsure which direction he traveled in after his escape. Anyone who might spot Zuccaro is urged not to approach him. Anyone with information is asked to immediately contact their nearest detachment of the West Virginia State Police or call 911.
Zuccaro is accused of shooting Jason Pratz at his home on Genteel Ridge Road in February 2013.
Jackson said Zuccaro is a calculated man, and he believes he will distance himself from the Brooke County area as much as possible.
“He is very capable of cognitive thought. He is very capable of planning. If he’s out on the run, he’s very capable of making his way through the woods, and stealing clothing, or whatever he needs to do,” Jackson said.
His trial has been delayed numerous times due to mental competency tests.
Stay with 7 News and WTRF.com for details on the case.