Curtis Ray Watson caught

NASHVILLE, TN (WSMV) - The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation announced the agency and its law enforcement partners have handed out $32,250 in rewards to citizens who helped in the capture of escaped inmate Curtis Watson last month.

Watson escaped from the West Tennessee State Penitentiary and is accused of killing Debra Johnson at her home on prison grounds on Aug. 7. Watson remained on the run until his arrest on Aug. 11.

The inmate was discovered in the early morning hours on Aug. 11 when Harvey and Ann Taylor spotted Watson on a surveillance camera taking items from a refrigerator on their back porch.

Krystle Hurdle later spotted Watson on her drive home on Sunday morning and called 911.

Watson was taken into custody around 11 a.m. when Tennessee Department of Correction and Tennessee Highway Patrol officers spotted Watson coming out of a soybean field about 750 feet from the Taylors’ home, about 10 miles from the prison.

At the time of his capture, a reward of up to $57,000 was being offered for information about Watson’s whereabouts.

The TBI said additional reward funds will be available pending a conviction in the case.

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