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Archive for Friday, February 2, 2001

Prison escapees captured

February 2, 2001

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— Six escaped convicts from Alabama were captured in Tennessee on Thursday, two days after they broke out of a maximum-security prison by using a broom handle to lift an electrified fence.

Authorities stumbled onto the group along a country road about 50 miles west of Nashville and 165 miles from the prison. They scattered and were caught without violence over an eight-hour span.

"We just partied, drank and got high just had a good time," convicted burglar James McClain said after his arrest.

He said the group was headed to Memphis and then planned to drive to Canada. They had stopped near in the unincorporated community of Bucksnort, west of Dickson, to eat, clean themselves and rest.

Authorities said they found the group by luck.

Just after midnight, two sheriff's deputies, looking for someone who had stolen a street sign, came upon a car parked near a creek the convicts apparently were using to wash themselves. Deputy Darrell Groves said the inmates "scattered like a bunch of deer" into the woods.

The deputies learned the car had been stolen near the Alabama prison and inside found a shotgun, an empty pistol holder, money and several makeshift knives. The deputies called for help and caught the first three inmates around 6 a.m. with the help of a tracking dog.

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