LCSO: Man indicted for murders of 2 Cape Coral women tried to escape jail with cellmate

Writer: Derrick Shaw
Published: Updated:
Wade Wilson (Credit: LCSO booking photo)

A Lee County man, who was indicted by a grand jury on two counts of first-degree premeditated murder for the deaths of two women last year, attempted to escape jail early Thursday along with his cellmate.

The sheriff’s office says Wade Wilson, 26, and his cellmate, Joseph Katz, 30, now face charges of attempted escape and criminal mischief.

Joseph Katz (Credit: LCSO booking photo)

Wilson has been in jail since Oct. 8, 2019, accused of killing Kristine Melton, 35, and Diane Ruiz, 43. He faces two first-degree murder charges for those deaths, as well as two counts of battery, one count of burglary and one count of petit theft.

Melton was found dead in her Cape Coral home on Oct. 7. The body of Ruiz was found in a field in Cape Coral four days after she was reported missing while walking to work.

The State Attorney’s Office is seeking the death penalty for Wilson, but they couldn’t say if these additional charges will be lumped in with the murders.

Katz, of Lehigh Acres, has been jailed since Feb. 23 on charges of aggravated battery on a pregnant woman, obstruction of justice, and violation of probation.

Sheriff Carmine Marceno Marceno said Wilson planned the escape.

“We received intelligence that advised us that we had a suspect or more trying to break out or quote ‘break out’ of the jail,” Marceno said.

The sheriff’s office said the pair tried to escape by smashing a window in their cell. It shattered, but never gave way.

“That’s not your regular window in a home or residence or commercial building, you can’t— it just doesn’t break,” said Sheriff Carmine Marceno. “And even if you took that window completely out, you see that bar right there? Nobody’s getting through there. You can’t physically fit.”

The sheriff’s office said the pair tried to escape by smashing this window in their cell. (Credit: LCSO)

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