An English as a second language teacher who had been arrested on suspicion of aiding three Orange County jail escapees was released Monday, Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas announced Monday.
Nooshafarin Ravaghi, 44, was suspected of forming a close relationship with inmate Hossein Nayeri, 37, and helping him and two others escape.
But Rackauckas said there was insufficient evidence to charge her, and the case was sent back for further investigation.
"It's unfortunate that she was so quickly labeled as a conspirator," Rackauckas said. "The evidence is not looking so strong with respect to her being a possible conspirator, or an aider-and-abetter or an accessory, so I wanted to announce that as soon as we could."
A romantic relationship had been suggested based on love letters, but it turned out that handwriting on those letters appeared to actually be Nayeri's, the DA said.
Ravaghi admitted in an interview to providing Google Earth maps to Nayeri, sheriff's Capt. Jeff Hallock said in response to questions about the DA's decision.
"We still will stand behind the fact that Ms. Ravaghi admitted to us that she provided maps," Hallock said. "The district attorney is responsible for filing charges."
Investigators were still trying to determine why Nayeri, who speaks English and graduated from high school in California, was in an ESL class; Rackauckas suggested inmates who are not native English speakers take such classes to relieve boredom.
A man who had been detained in connection with the escape, Loc Ba Nguyen, has been charged, Rackauckas said. Nguyen was suspected of getting tools to the trio.