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Escaped Inmate Firefighter Quickly Found

The inmate who was captured in a portable rest room on the Cuesta College campus Monday morning is a minimum security inmate who was serving time for a burglary conviction.

Jose A. Paredes was part of an inmate group housed at Camp San Luis Obispo while assisting in firefighting efforts against the Chimney Fire. He went missing sometime after 3:40 Monday morning. Search efforts around the tent where he was assigned to sleep and the Camp perimeter failed to locate him.

Cuesta College Police did locate him just after 10:00 a.m. hiding in a portable restroom near the soccer field.

Paredes was serving a two-year sentence for a first degree burglary conviction. He was supposed to be released on parole next May.


A prison inmate who had been assigned firefighting duties walked away from Camp San Luis Obispo early Monday, but was found hiding inside a portable restroom near the soccer field on the Cuesta College campus.

The inmate was part of a group of prisoner/firefighters housed at the camp, a National Guard facility northeast of San Luis Obispo.

Cuesta College is adjacent to the camp. Police Chief Bryan Millard confirmed his department searched campus for the missing inmate, discovering him in a portable restroom near the soccer field. He was taken into custody without incident.

Reverse 911 calls were sent out to other residents in the area as a precaution before he was discovered and recaptured.

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