Payette Jail escapee arrested in Mexico

Nicholas Grove
Nicholas Grove

Nicholas Anthony Grove, 38, was turned over Friday to authorities in the United States, a day after his arrest in a seaside city on the Yucatán Penninsula.

Grove, from Ontario, Ore., scaled a recreation yard fence, went over a razor wire fence and fled on foot from the Payette County Jail on Aug. 26, 2014.

He had been arrested 11 days earlier and charged with carrying a concealed weapon without a permit, unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, possession of burglary tools and driving with an invalid license.

The arrest was announced Friday afternoon by Brian Underwood, U.S. Marshal for Idaho.

The U.S. Marshals Service assigned one of its agents to work the case fulltime since Grove’s escape, Underwood said. The agency became involved following requests from the sheriff’s office and police department in Payette.

“As deputy U.S. marshals do every day with fugitives who are wanted on crimes of violence or escapes from local jurisdictions, we adopted the Payette County escape warrant, which essentially means we agreed to work the case nationwide using our resources and expertise,” Underwood said.

Payette County Sheriff Chad Huff said he was pleased to hear that Huff was apprehended.

“He caused us some grief and we’re glad to see tha he’s off the streets and hopefully he’ll get his day in court in Payette County,” Huff said.

Since Grove’s escape, the Payette County Jail has made changes to prevent anyone else from following Grove’s lead, Huff said.

“We’ve taken some pretty aggressive stances in upgrading our facility, along with the recreational yard, adding a fence, adding more cameras to the jail, so we can make it easier to monitor the jail,” Huff said. “With that, we believe our safety and security of the jail has increased and is much better.”

It’s unclear when Grove might return to Payette County, where he is likely to face additional charges related to the escape.

Underwood declined to say where Grove is being held. If Grove fights extradition, that information will be made public as he appears in court on that matter.

After his escape, Grove posted messages to his Facebook account bragging about fleeing the jail.

John Sowell: 208-377-6423, @IDS_Sowell