Deputies capture escaped work-release convict

Authorities with the Shenandoah County Sheriff’s Office located and detained an escaped work-release inmate from Page County in Quicksburg on Saturday.

Captain Wes Dellinger of the Sheriff’s Office said deputies were dispatched to the 700 block of Wissler Road at 6 a.m. where they encountered Zachary Aaron Sours, 33, of 1040 Kimball Road in Luray, in the front yard.

“Deputies found Sours lying there in the yard and he was identified as the person in the work-release walkoff,” Dellinger said.

Sours was found with scratches on his body and was subsequently transported to Shenandoah Memorial Hospital by a rescue squad, before being transferred to Rappahannock-Shenandoah-Warren Regional Jail. Authorities with the sheriff’s office have since charged him with escaping custody.

The escape attempt occurred while Sours was working at New Market Poultry Products. Dellinger said work release is usually a low security process offered to non-violent criminals with a good track record with their detainers.

“It has a lot to do with their behavior,” Dellinger said. “That process allows them to pay for restitution for their crimes.”

According to the Page County Circuit Court database, Sours was serving time for selling and distributing Schedule II drugs in April of 2015. He was sentenced Aug. 3, 2016. Sours then escaped from his work detail at 11:45 a.m. Sept. 14.

Brad Respess, President and CEO of Tip Top Poultry, parent company of New Market Poultry Products, said the plant typically has up to 12 inmates working there at a given time.

He said work-release candidates are screened before beginning their work, and he defended the practice as a step toward cutting down on prison recidivism rates and making a more healthy reintegration period for ex-convicts.

Contact staff writer Jake Zuckerman at 540-465-5137 ext. 152, or

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