Man gets 15 years for slipping handcuffs

A Michigan man was sentenced in Santa Rosa County court Tuesday, Nov. 8, for escaping from police custody using a handcuff key according to the State Attorney’s office.

John Saatio, 36, was sentenced by Circuit Judge John Simon to 15 years in state prison after Saatio had entered a plea straight to the court Nov. 2 on the charges of escape and possession of a concealed handcuff key.

On July 2, Saatio was being transported in a private prisoner transportation van heading from Texas to Michigan. While at a rest stop off Interstate 10 in Santa Rosa County, Saatio used a makeshift handcuff key to remove his handcuffs and escape from custody. After an extensive manhunt, Saatio was apprehended by the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office near Elvis Presley Road in East Milton the next day.

Saatio had previously escaped custody from the State of Michigan and fled to Costa Rica, where he was extradited back to the United States. Saatio has outstanding warrants from Michigan for home invasion robbery and destruction of police property.

This case was investigated by the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant State Attorney Zachary Brost prosecuted the case.




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