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Manhunt on for fugitive Colo. inmate

Associated Press / August 24, 2010

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STERLING, Colo. — Authorities searched yesterday for an inmate convicted of attempted murder and other crimes who escaped from a maximum security prison in northeast Colorado.

Douglas J. Alward, 48, fled from the Sterling Correctional Facility after 9 p.m. Sunday, the Colorado Department of Corrections said.

Prison authorities and officers from Sterling, Logan County, and the state patrol were involved in the hunt, said Katherine Sanguinetti, a spokeswoman for the state corrections department.

Alward was serving a 20-to-40-year sentence for attempted murder, assault, burglary, and kidnapping.

He would have been eligible for parole in October, Sanguinetti said. He had been “following the rules’’ and worked his way to a classification considered just below the minimum risk, she said.

Sanguinetti declined to disclose how the escape occurred but stressed that Alward faced rigid security. The prison has two rows of fences about 100 yards from the main buildings, which house up to 953 inmates.

Sanguinetti said Alward was last seen shortly after 9 p.m. and didn’t appear for a routine roll-call an hour later. She said he should be considered dangerous, warning that “we don’t know if he broke into someplace and got a weapon.’’

Officials used an automated telephone dialing system to tell residents about the escape.

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