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Archive for Saturday, November 19, 2005

Second inmate from prison escape caught

November 19, 2005

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— The second of two inmates who used a homemade grappling hook to escape from prison was captured Friday after four days on the run, and Gov. Tom Vilsack suspended at least one state employee in connection with the breakout.

Vilsack said more suspensions were expected as state officials investigate how the inmates, using a rope fashioned from upholstery webbing from the prison furniture shop, were able to scale a 30-foot stone wall without officials noticing.

Robert Joseph Legendre, 27, was captured without incident at a truck stop in Steele, Mo., where he was found sitting in a stolen pickup truck. The other escaped convict, Martin Moon, 34, was arrested Thursday, near Chester, Ill.

Legendre, convicted of attempted murder, had been seen repeatedly at the truck stop since Thursday afternoon. He had asked customers for gas money.

Moon and Legendre escaped from the Iowa State Penitentiary in Fort Madison on Monday. A corrections official has said the guard tower near the spot where the inmates went over the wall was unmanned at the time because of budget cuts.

The governor would not identify the suspended employee or his position, but said there was a failure to account for inmates in the prison industries, where Moon and Legendre had been working.

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