Lee County deputies searching for fugitive Bobby Smith

Escapee spotted this morning by Oak Hill Dairy Farm

Officials are searching for Bobby Smith (Georgia Department of Corrections)

Officials are searching for Bobby Smith (Georgia Department of Corrections)

LEESBURG — Officials with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office cornered off an area by the Oak Hill Dairy Farm on U.S. 19 on Monday morning after fugitive Bobby Smith was reportedly seen in the area.

Lee County Deputy Chief Lewis Harris said that Smith, who failed to report back to the Albany Transitional Center on Nov. 17, was reportedly spotted nearby at 8 a.m. on Monday. He was said to be traveling east on foot in an adjacent wooded area.

The Georgia Department of Corrections and Georgia State Patrol were among the agencies in the vicinity who had teams in the air and on the ground looking for Smith, Harris said.

Georgia Department of Corrections records show Smith was convicted of murder in DeKalb County in 1987. Officials said immediately following his disappearance that — while there are theories as to why he walked off — it was not clear why he left the center, located on North Washington Street in downtown Albany, where he was finishing out his sentence on “easy time” a few weeks before his scheduled release.

A few days after leaving the center, law enforcement officers, including deputies from Lee and Terrell counties, state troopers and U.S. Marshals, were out searching for him. He is believed to have also been seen at the Bronwood City Hall on Nov. 20 asking to use the phone and for directions to Smithville before heading in that direction.

Smith, 54, is a black male who is 5 feet 8 inches tall and weighs 220 pounds. Those with further information on his whereabouts should contact the Lee County Sheriff’s Office at (229) 759-6012.