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#US Manhunt

# us-manhunt - Friday 20 August, 2010

THE US FUGITIVE who broke out of an Arizona prison with two fellow inmates has finally been captured after a three-week manhunt.

John McCluskey, 45, was on the run with his cousin and fiancée Casslyn Welch, 44, were tracked by authorities across six states before being tracked down to a camp site in eastern Arizona.

A ranger became suspicious when he discovered a car parked in the state park near an unattended fire.

A SWAT team surrounded McCluskey and Welch, and took them into custody. McCluskey told authorities he wished he had killed the forest ranger when he had the chance.

The couple, who were regarded as “Americda’s Most Wanted”, are suspected of murdering two people, whose burned bodies were discovered in a trailer on a ranch in New Mexico on 4 August.

Welch is accused of assisting McCluskey and two other inmates in their prison escape on 30 July.

[caption id="attachment_13435" align="alignnone" width="497" caption="In this image provided by the US Marshals Service Casslyn Welch is shown being taken into custody. (AP Photo/U.S. Marshals Office)"][/caption]

The escape has brought the prison’s security procedures into question, but records show that the prison’s security passed official checks.

The other two inmates were re-captured within days of the escape.

McCluskey’s stepfather made a television appeal asking him to turn himself in, but threatening to shoot him if he should return home.

# us-manhunt - Tuesday 10 August, 2010

A US FUGITIVE and his cousin-fiancée are on the run in the US since his escape from prison nearly two weeks ago. John McCluskey, 45, and Casslyn Welch, 44, have been chased by police across six states.

Two other prisoners who escaped alongside McCluskey have already been captured. Welch allegedly helped the trio to break out of Arizona State Prison by providing tools to cut the prison fence.

McCluskey was serving a 15-year sentence for attempted second-degree murder at the time of his escape. He and Welch are suspected of murdering a couple whose burned remains were discovered in a camper on a remote ranch in Oklahoma.

The couple, who are believed to style themselves on the notorious outlaws Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow, are believed to have left their hiding spot in the Yellowstone National Park area of Wyoming.

Unconventional appeal

US authorities say they don’t believe McCluskey and Welch may not be willing to “go down lightly” if confronted by authorities. In an extraordinary public appeal, McCluskey’s stepfather called for him to give himself up.

In his plea, Jack Washburn threatened to shoot McCluskey if he ever saw him again and said:

I know what you guys are doing. You think you’re Bonnie and Clyde: you’re not. You’re no comparison, you’re scum.

The Toronto Sun today reported that the couple may be heading for the Canadian border.

The prison break has exposed security flaws at the complex. AP reports that no alarms rang as the three men made their getaway from the medium-security institution.