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Orange Co. deputies search for escaped arrestee

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Updated: 2/06 10:23 pm
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. -- A man escaped from an Orange County deputy shortly after his arrest around noon on Monday officials said.

Deputies said Willie Hollis went to the courthouse for a violation of probation hearing to discuss his past false imprisonment and grand theft charges.

After being released by the judge, an observant Orange County Sheriff’s deputy remembered seeing the 31-year-old driving through the jail parking lot before the hearing and recognized him.

“When he arrived at the jail they realized this person should not have been driving ,” said Jeff Williamson with the Orange County’s Sheriff Office. “He's a habitual traffic offender. He was then arrested for a traffic violation charge.”

As the deputy who arrested Hollis filed paperwork, authorities said Hollis walked around the glass holding area and then sprinted to a vehicle that appeared to be waiting for him outside, possibly driven by his girlfriend.

“Deputies tried to follow him but apparently weren't able to keep up with him, and [have] not been able to arrest him and he's at large,” Williamson said. “We're looking at known associates, of course.  We're looking into whatever background we can because he does have a dangerous history.”

The Sheriff's Officie told WFTV it will review its practices to see if improvements can be made when deputies deal with people inside the building.

Hollis, who’s from Palm Beach County, is described as a black man, standing about 5 feet 10 inches tall with dreadlocks. He was last seen driving a gray 2008 Nissan Altima with a New York license plate.

Hollis has a history of arrest, including kidnapping and sexual battery, authorities said.

Anyone with information to Hollis' whereabouts is asked to contact authorities.

Video: WFTV Orlando
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