TODAY   |  October 19, 2013

Manhunt for two convicted killers mistakenly released

This weekend, priority number one for law enforcement in Florida is finding two men who were mistakenly freed from prison using forged documents. NBC’s Sarah Dallof reports.

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>>> the florida manhunt where we want to begin this morning. so much focus on florida. sarah doloff is in orlando with the latest on the search for the two men. good morning.

>> reporter: good morning, erica. catching these men is priority number one from federal, state, and local authorities who still believe that both are in the area. in fact, within days of their escape, they walked in to the nearby county jail and registered as felons. joseph jenkins and charles walker daring plans to stop after they were mistakenly freed from prison 11 days apart. they both came to the orange county jail to be fingerprinted and photographed as they would have done if they were legitimately relieved.

>> this is frustrating to all of us.

>> reporter: their risky road to escape was paved carefully forged documents. the bogus paper work bore the signature of judge melvin perry who presided over the headline casey anthony trial.

>> it's very ingenious. it's a breakout without having to break out.

>> reporter: both men had been sentenced to life in prison . jenkins for the murder of roscoe pew and slater's mother alert authorities to the escape after receiving this letter informing her of walker's release.

>> i almost passed out really. i almost passed out.

>> words couldn't express how -- how we feel.

>> reporter: for victim roscoe pew's children, news of jenkins escapes has opened old wounds of their witnessing their father shot to death 15 years ago.

>> at the end of the day , i feel like him being in prison was enough because we still don't have our daddy.

>> reporter: prosecutors are now combing through their records to look for any other inmates who may have also been mistakenly relieved as officials continue to on examine what went wrong in this case.

>> why did this occur in the first place? what were the system's failures.

>> reporter: questions that may not be answered until both convicted killers are back behind bars. witnesses have spotted both of these guys around orlando. authorities are calling them dangerous, but as to if they are armed, they say they don't know right now.

>> sarah, thank you.