Search continues for escaped conservation camp inmate

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald
The Siskiyou County Sheriff's Office distributed this photograph of Daniel Fidler.

The Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office reported Monday afternoon that it is working with other law enforcement authorities in a continuing search for an escaped state prison inmate who walked away from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation’s Deadwood Conservation Camp on Dec. 26, prior to a headcount conducted at 8:30 p.m.

The inmate, according to CDCR, is 42 year old Daniel Fidler. He is 5’ 8” and about 174 pounds, has hazel eyes and a bald head.

Fidler is a prime suspect in the theft of a flat-bed truck taken in the Fort Jones area, according to a Sheriff’s Office news release. The vehicle was later abandoned near Horse Creek east of SR 96 near mile post marker 88.

Fidler has ties to Humboldt County and may be headed west to that county or vicinity, according to the release.

CDCR reports that Fidler was committed to state prison for burglary.

A “Code Red” notification was initiated for area residents to exercise caution in the areas impacted by the inmate’s escape.

Sheriff Jon Lopey states in the news release, “As previously advised, all citizens in the area and those working, residing, or visiting communities along the SR 96 corridor in particular, are advised to be on the look-out for Fidler. Citizens should be cautious, secure their personal property, lock doors to residences, vehicles, and out-buildings, and secure all other forms of transportation under their control. Citizens are advised not to pick up hitchhikers. We are working with state and local authorities to locate and apprehend the escaped inmate. He should be considered dangerous but there is no indication that he is armed and generally, inmates assigned to state conservation camps are not convicted of dangerous felony violations of law and are considered minimum-security risks. All citizens are urged to dial 9-1-1 if they observe Fidler or anyone matching Fidler’s description, or, if they have any information about his whereabouts or activities.”

CDCR is responsible for the selection, supervision, care and discipline of the inmates assigned to the 44 conservation camps throughout California, according to the release. The California Department of Forestry jointly manages 40 conservation camps with CDCR, supervises the work of the inmate fire crews, and is responsible for inmate custody while on daily work projects. CDCR staff accompanies inmate fire crews on out-of-county assignments or on local assignments located near residential areas. Inmates are directly supervised 24 hours per day, including when they are assigned to work projects and while assigned to emergencies.

“CDCR conservation camps, such as Deadwood Conservation Camp #23 in the Fort Jones area, provide able-bodied and trained work crews for fire suppression and other emergencies and often provide assistance and labor for community service projects,” states Sheriff Lopey. “The crews work on many local conservation projects on public lands, which benefits local communities and helps to educate, train, and rehabilitate the involved inmates.”

Anyone with information about Fidler’s whereabouts is asked to contact 9-1-1. Other inquiries can be directed to the Sheriff’s Office 24-hour Dispatch Center at (530) 841-2900 or the California Correctional Center Watch Commander at (530) 257-2181, ext. 4173.