COCKE COUNTY, Tenn. (WATE) — Two Cocke County inmates are on the run after escaping a litter crew.

Cocke County Sheriff’s Office is actively searching for Christopher Lee Webb and Eric Scott Ballard after the two walked away from a work detail on Industrial Avenue near Newport on Friday afternoon.

Around 3 p.m., Ballard claimed he needed to “defecate or he was going to soil his pants,” according to a sheriff’s office incident report. Webb also said he needed to relieve himself.

Both inmates entered the woods across from the litter van, the report states, and within 10 minutes the corrections officer said he “lost sight of them.” He searched for them for 5-7 minutes before loading the other inmates into the van.

The sheriff’s office said they have information that the two may have been picked up.

Webb was arrested Aug. 2 on a probation violation. Ballard has been in jail since November 2021 on a drug charges.

Dispatch was notified at 3:35 p.m. that Ballard and Webb had absconded. Officers and K9 were dispatched to the scene.

Cocke County Sheriff’s Office asks that if anyone has information on where the two may be, or how they escaped, to please contact dispatch at 423-623-3064 immediately, or 423-623-6004 after 8 a.m.

The administration said they will be investigating the reason behind the escape.