Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

August 20, 2013

Escapee dead after holding up elderly couple in Taylor County

By Kyle Ocker
The Daily Iowegian

BEDFORD — BEDFORD — A four-day manhunt for a Centerville man who escaped from the Clarinda Correctional Facility's minimum security custody lodge is over after he was shot and killed by a private citizen whom he held up for nearly four hours Monday night into Tuesday morning.

Rodney Eugene Long, 38, of Centerville, was found dead, lying face down in the kitchen of Jerome Mauderly, a retired Maryville prison guard.

Long invaded the residence of Jerome Mauderly, 71, and wife Carolyn Mauderly, 66, at 10:15 p.m Monday night. After a four-hour holdup, Jerome shot Long one time with a shot gun, officials said at a Tuesday morning press conference in Taylor County. Long had a semi-automatic weapon.

Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation Special Agent Mitch Mortveldt confirmed that the couple will not face any charges.

Mortveldt said 16 square miles were searched in the area. The couple's property was searched three times.

Long is accused of shooting a Taylor County Sheriff's Deputy before stealing the deputy's car and leading multiple agencies on a 40 minute chase through rural Taylor County Sunday morning.

Long was serving prison time at Clarinda for a third degree burglary charge, a class "D" felony. It was a charge he was arrested in Centerville for in June 2012.

A press release from the Iowa Department of Public Safety states at 11:25 p.m. Sunday, Taylor County Deputies received a call of a suspicious person walking along Highway 2 east of New Market.

Taylor County Deputy Dan Wyckoff was the first to arrive on scene. But, as he got out of his car to speak with the individual, who officials have identified as Long, he was shot twice — once in the arm and once in the abdomen. While the deputy was taking cover, Long stole the deputy's patrol vehicle and left the scene.

A second deputy arrived on scene and picked up Deputy Wyckoff and began to pursue Long.

Long led multiple agencies, from both Iowa and Missouri, on a 40 minute chase when more gunfire was exchanged between the police and Long.

Long crashed the stolen patrol vehicle, fled on foot and eventually escaped from police again. Officers lost sight of Long near the area of 265th Avenue and Highland Avenue in Taylor County.

A manhunt involving over a dozen agencies from Iowa, Missouri and Nebraska ensued moments following the crash, involving ground and air searches. Those searches were suspended as night fell on Monday, with extra patrols by Iowa State Patrol officers and county deputies in the area ordered.

Deputy Wyckoff was taken by air ambulance on Sunday to an Omaha area hospital for treatment. He remained hospitalized as of Tuesday morning, but was in stable condition. Wyckoff was wearing a bullet proof vest and did not suffer life-threatening injuries. He is expected to make a full recovery.

The press release from the Department of Public Safety said that personal items left in the stolen patrol vehicle led officers to believe it was Long.

This isn't the first time Long has escaped from custody.

Long was one of two individuals who briefly escaped from custody last year. In June 2012, Long was complaining of injuries at the Centerville Law Center following his arrest on burglary charges.

Long was transported to Mercy Medical Center to tend to his injuries when, according to a press release from the Centerville Police Department, he escaped from custody and ran south from the hospital. Officers pursued on foot but lost Long in the wooded area near the hospital. Long was found two and half hours later on Rock Valley Road and was taken into custody.

An autopsy for Long is scheduled for tomorrow in Ankeny. Officials said it was unknown if he had a mental illness.