Seven teenagers who escaped from the Echo Glen Children’s Center in Snoqualmie on May 28 have all been apprehended.
Charges were filed on June 1 by the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office against one of the 16-year-olds for first-degree robbery and first-degree escape. That teen was serving a sentence for second-degree murder when he attempted to escape.
Charges were filed against another teen, 16, for first-degree robbery, unlawful imprisonment, motor vehicle theft and first-degree escape. Two more teens, ages 16 and 17, were charged with the same crimes. The prosecutor’s documents noted that this was one teen’s second escape attempt from Echo Glen. He was arrested in January 2022 at a Kent McDonald’s on the East Hill after his escape. That teen is serving a sentence for first-degree murder.
According to charging documents, the teens allegedly attacked a security guard at the facility in their building, referred to as a “cottage.” The teens reportedly assaulted her severely, causing visible injuries to her face, head and hands. The teens stole her cellphone and car keys, used her facility keys to escape their building and then ran to the employee parking lot, documents state. The teens then used the guard’s car to escape the facility.
Some of the teens allegedly dragged the security guard into a cell and locked her inside while they escaped, which garnered unlawful imprisonment charges.
“The evidence demonstrates that each member of this group was aware of this plan. The video shows the group communicating with each other at every stage – before the attack, during the attack, and on their way out of the cottage,” prosecutors wrote of the coordinated effort between the offenders. “The fact that not everyone in the cottage was released to join in the escape further demonstrates that those who escaped helped in the planning and execution of this brazen escape.”
The security guard’s stolen vehicle was found in Vancouver, Washington before the teens were chased and caught.
Echo Glen, located near Snoqualmie Valley Hospital, is a medium-maximum security facility and rehabilitation center serving residents up to the age of 17. This past April, the DCYF received $8 million in state funds to make “necessary security upgrades.”
A Juvenile Rehabilitation Critical Incident Response Team will be conducting a review of the escape, according to the DCYF.
Escape prompts new alert system
Residents in Snoqualmie neighborhoods near Echo Glen can now opt-in to receive a message altering them of a future escape.
During an escape, the Snoqualmie Police chief would activate the new alert, notifying residents in the Eagle Point, Aster Creek and Deer Park neighborhoods. The same message would go out through the city’s website and emergency alert system.
The city of Snoqualmie partnered with the King County Office of Emergency Management to develop the new Echo Glen escape notification.