BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Michael Vallery, the man who was behind bars for allegedly stabbing his wife to death in 2018, is back in custody after being mistakenly set free Friday, law enforcement officials said.
He spent more than three days on the run after he was able to take off once an error allowed him to get out of EBR parish prison on the wrong bond.
“The way it was interpreted, he was let out on a bond of $150,000 as opposed to $200,000,” said District Attorney Hillar Moore.
The Louisiana State Police Fugitive Task Force tracked him down late Tuesday afternoon in Abbeville. It remains unclear why he traveled more than an hour outside Baton Rouge. He had been behind bars since Christmas Day when he was picked up and accused of stabbing his wife to death. Back then, he was able to give law enforcement the slip for weeks.
“He was not apprehended immediately and it took some time to get him,” Moore added. “It’s why we began searching on Saturday and trying to put some feelers out as to where he potentially could be.”
He and his wife, 51-year-old Stefanie Vallery, had been separated and were headed for divorce at the time of the alleged attack. Police say the two got into an argument inside their Honey Drive home in Baton Rouge when Vallery brutally stabbed her in front of her two daughters and sister.
“I still feel for the victims in this case and receiving notice that someone’s out of jail without them having any heads up other than the notice they got that he’s out. It had to be startling for them,” said Moore.
A closer look at Vallery’s bond paperwork shows that it lists his bond as $100,000 for the second-degree murder charge and $50,000 for the two counts of attempted second-degree murder. Moore calls the whole ordeal a terrible mix-up that can, unfortunately, sometimes happen.
“Courts and jails process that many pieces of paper and that many numbers and stuff like this can happen and obviously did happen,” he added.
The Fugitive Task Force along with officers from the Abbeville Police Department took him into custody in Abbeville around 5 p.m. Tuesday evening.
He is currently being transferred to be booked back into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison.