Killer who escaped before Ike still loose

September 19, 2008 2:05:08 PM PDT
Texas prison officials continued to hunt Friday for a convicted murderer who escaped from a Brazoria County prison before Hurricane Ike hit last weekend. Marlow Wayne Reynolds, 54, fled the Texas Department of Criminal Justice Stringfellow Unit the evening of Sept. 9 by climbing a fence at a prison recreation yard. He'd been locked up since December 2004 with a 40-year term for murder, possession of a prohibited weapon and tampering with physical evidence, all out of Liberty County. The offenses occurred in September 2003.

"He probably could not have picked a better time to escape in terms of the evacuations from Hurricane Ike because so many people were leaving Brazoria County," agency spokeswoman Michelle Lyons said Friday. "He would have had his pick of empty homes where he could hide out."

The empty homes also would have given him access to food and a change of clothing and possibly shelter from the 100 mph winds that whipped the area when the storm hit.

Brazoria County Sheriff Charles Wagner told the Houston Chronicle he thought Reynolds may still be somewhere in the dense woods near the prison.

"He's a survivalist," Wagner said. "He knows how to hide out in the woods."

Reynolds is described as a 6-foot-tall, 186-pound white man.

He's from Dayton in Liberty County and was convicted of the shooting death of a drinking buddy, 36-year-old Leslie Ledford, also of Dayton. At his trial, Reynolds testified the shooting was in self-defense.

Ledford's body was found in a burn pit on Reynolds' property. Evidence showed Wood had been piled on top of the body to try to destroy the remains.

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