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Youth and Adult Correctional Agency Secretary Joe Sandoval today announced that California Department of Corrections officials, working with the FBI, captured state prison escapee David Finney Wednesday night in Nashville, Tennessee.

“I want to commend the Department of Correction’s investigators for their outstanding work in tracking down this dangerous and elusive criminal,” said Sandoval.

CDC’s Special Services Unit (SSU) had been tracking him ever since. When leads indicated Finney was at a hotel in Nashville, SSU asked for help from the FBI’s local Violent Crimes Task Force. The FBI went to the hotel where Finney showed identification under a different name.

During his interview with the FBI, Finney bolted from the hotel room but the agents were able to pursue and capture him. During a search of the hotel room, agents found the identification Finney used to escape from the California prison. The FBI also found a police scanner, walkie-talkie and pepper spray disguised as a pager.

Finney is being held in Nashville pending extradition to California where he will face new felony prosecution. The FBI also is investigating Finney for possible involvement in other crimes.

Finney’s escape history includes:

Escape from county jail after arrest in mid-70s

  • 1978 escape from Correctional Training Facility at Soledad, dressed as a Correctional Officer
  • 1979 escape from agents returning him to California after the 1978 escape
  • 1997 escape from R.J. Donovan Correctional Facility near San Diego.