Search underway for escaped inmate

Daniel Lee Falls, 26, escaped overnight from the Polk County Jail and the search continues at this time.

May 24, 2010 3:36:03 PM PDT
There's a manhunt underway in Polk County where an inmate escaped from the county jail and is still on the loose. Daniel Lee Falls, 26, escaped out a back door early Monday morning when a guard got distracted.

The multi-agency search is underway. Deputies say they do not know whether he is armed, but they do consider him dangerous.

Falls was working inside the kitchen, pressure-washing the floor and equipment at the Polk Co. Jail around midnight. The back door was open to run a hose inside the kitchen. When the guard turned his back on Falls, the jailer says he ran out of the open door.

"He was working with a work crew here in the jail, cleaning the kitchen with the guard," said Chief Deputy Byron Lyons of the Polk County Sheriff's Office. "The back door was open and when the guard turned to take care of some other business, this inmate ran from the building."

Falls was serving time for a bond forfeiture on a felony theft case, but that is not his only conviction.

Deputies say he took advantage of conditions on the property that are only temporary and they also say this was Falls' first time ever working on a kitchen cleanup duty.

"Due to the fact that we have construction going on here with the new facility, all the perimeter fences are down because of the construction. So pretty much once he got outside the door, it was pretty easy for him to get off the property," Chief Deputy Lyons said.

Once Falls was off the property, he was able to get to a friend's house and even change clothes. He is now wearing a t-shirt, dark shorts and white shoes. So he may not look like an inmate to someone who hasn't seen his picture.

Authorities say until Falls is found, people in Livingston are being told to keep their doors locked.

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