Saturday, February 18, 2006

The Cook County Sieve
Inmate Captured 2 Hours After She Escaped

CHICAGO (AP) -- A series of escapes from the county jail was already bizarre: In one case, an inmate slipped into a laundry truck to flee. In another, a guard is accused of helping six others breaking out to boost the political campaign of a sheriff's candidate.

On Friday, the trend turned even more strange when Sheriff Michael Sheahan personally apprehended the latest fugitive, a woman who authorities said escaped from a hospital when her guard left to take a phone call…

"You can't trust a prisoner, and this is just another example of an individual that works for us that made a mistake, and he'll be dealt with," Sheahan said.

Before this month, no inmates had escaped from the jail in the previous 10 years. Cook County Jail typically houses 10,000 inmates…

On Feb. 10, a member of an inmate work crew slipped out of jail in a laundry truck; he was caught the next day, but that night six more inmates escaped. All were recaptured in just over 24 hours.

In addition, a woman visiting her inmate boyfriend allegedly smuggled in a gun through a plexiglass divider, resulting in a Feb. 1 shooting that left three inmates with minor injures…

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