Alert system helped police capture two escaped patients

BOLIVAR, Tenn. — Two men escaped from the Western Mental Health Institute around 6:30 p.m. Sunday. Police say the men, 28-year-old Dillon Hight and 29-year-old Timothy Keen, were back in custody four hours later.

Assistant Chief Eddie Henson of the Bolivar Police Department mentioned why the patients were dangerous.

“One of them was there for an evaluation and had been charged with attempted murder. I’m not sure which county he was from. And then the other was an aggravated assault, I believe,” Assistant Chief Henson said.

Police were able to notify nearly 5,000 residents of Hight and Keen’s escape, thanks to a county-wide alert.

Hardeman County Mayor Jimmy Sain says the Code RED alert system is popular in the area and helped police with their efforts.

“In a matter of seconds, everyone who is signed up, they can choose to get a text, a phone call, and they can get an email,” Mayor Sain said. “For instance, they may have six officers working last night, but we had 5,000 sets of eyes within seconds, looking for the same two subjects they were looking for.”

Assistant Chief Henson agrees that all those extra eyes from concerned residents helped the department.

“Yes, it worked. It worked just the way I would want it to,” Henson said.

Interested residents can go to and click on the Code RED emergency notification system.

Categories: Local News, News