Virginia man who led police on 3-day manhunt appears in court

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MONTGOMERY Co.., Va. (WDBJ7) — UPDATE (March 12):

Cody Drain appeared in a striped jumpsuit in a Pulaski County courtroom on Monday: a stark contrast from the last image seen of Drain on January 2, the day of his arrest.

Drain, 26, had a scheduled preliminary hearing in Pulaski General District Court for two charges. One was a misdemeanor charge for profane swearing and intoxication in public, and the other, a felony charge for grand larceny involving vehicle theft.

Montgomery County deputies first arrested Drain on December 30 in relation to that stolen vehicle out of Pulaski County.

Once in custody, Drain allegedly removed his restraints and stole a deputy's vehicle, leading police on what became a three-day manhunt, ending in Drain's arrest. Police allege Drain also stole another vehicle and a gun while on the run.

The Commonwealth said it found out at the last minute that the witness it planned to have testify against Drain on Monday was unable to do so.

Instead, prosecutors plan to pursue a direct indictment, so the charges were not certified by the judge on Monday.

Assistant Commonwealth’s attorney Travis Epes said he plans to still get this case before the April meeting of the grand jury through a direct indictment.

Drain is also facing nearly 30 additional combined charges in Wythe and Montgomery counties.

His next scheduled court date is on March 21 in Wythe County.


UPDATE (4:45 p.m. Jan. 3):

The Wythe County Sheriff's Office has released further details on the arrest of Cody Drain.

Deputies reportedly received information that Drain was hiding at a home in the 2100 block of Reed Creek Drive in the Barren Springs area of Wythe County, according to a release from the Wythe County Sheriff's Office.

The county's tactical team executed a search warrant at the residence, where they found five subjects there. Drain was not in the home at the time, but two of the subjects from the residence were found to be wanted fugitives, the report stated.

Christopher Lamount Payton and Josh Safewright both were arrested on outstanding warrants. Payton was wanted for 2 counts of probation violation. Safewright was wanted for failure to appear in Pulaski Circuit Court. It was reported that Drain was at the residence but had left about a half hour before police arrived.

Deputies were still in the area when they received a tip that Drain had returned to the residence on Reed Creek Drive. Upon arrival to the residence, Drain was found running in a field near the joining of Reed Creek and New River. Deputies surrounded Drain, who then jumped into the creek. The water level was high due to the recent rains, however, and Drain quickly returned to shore an turned himself in.



A Pulaski man who had been on the run from police since Sunday has been caught, police say.

Cody Drain, 26, Pulaski, was found near the 2200 block of Reed Creek Drive near Barren Springs, in Wythe County. He ran from deputies, who then caught him by the New River.

The search for Drain started in Montgomery County after he escaped deputy custody early Sunday morning. His escape involved three stolen vehicles, including a deputy's own patrol car. Drain had stolen a 2002 Volvo and it was believed he used it to flee the area.

A tip brought deputies to Rural Retreat Monday evening. They were contacted by Wythe County deputies with news that the Volvo they thought Drain stole Sunday night had been recovered.

The region-wide manhunt all started Sunday morning, when a Montgomery County Sheriff's deputy spotted a stolen vehicle.

Cody Drain and Cynthia Turpin were arrested after a short chase. Both were charged, but the night was far from over.

At approximately 3:45 that morning, a deputy calls over the scanner, "NRV, someone just stole my car."

Drain partially removed his restraints while he was alone and stole the deputy's patrol car.

Dispatch issued a "be on the lookout" for the stolen patrol car and it was eventually found on Elliot Creek Road. Drain was not in sight, but he left a trail.

Around 6 p.m., 15 hours into the search, deputies were brought to Bow Hill Road where someone said they were missing camouflage clothing and a handgun. They also found clothing that is believed to belong to Drain.

By morning, deputies had learned of another tip in the same area of the county.

"We drove up our drive way- and I said to my husband, kind of looks like the Volvo is gone," recounted Heather Martin, who lives in the Pilot area of Montgomery County.

Deputies believed Drain took the Volvo from the Martin's house on Fawn Lane. The same Volvo showed up Monday morning abandoned in a Rural Retreat church parking lot.

According to court records, Drain was arrested on drug charges in April. He was charged with possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute.

In August he was ordered into drug court in Pulaski County. After several no-shows a warrant was issued for his arrest. Drain has been listed as a "fugitive" on the Pulaski County Circuit Court website since late November.

According to the Montgomery County Sheriff's Office, Drain has a history of theft, specifically vehicle theft.