High risk sex offender escapes east Houston halfway house


Michael Elbert Young, 42, was last seen at the Southeast Texas Transitional Center on 10950 Beaumont Highway around 9:50pm Thursday. Authorities say he climbed over a barbed wire-topped fence and discarded his GPS tracking ankle monitor.

Young is 5 feet 6 inches tall, 150 pounds, and was last seen wearing a dark blue t-shirt, blue jeans and a dark blue baseball cap.

Officials say he has friends and family in and around the Houston area. Young may be mentally unstable, a condition possibly aggravated when not taking medication. Young is not known to be armed but has had a history of using weapons, primarily knives, during previous assaults.

DPS considers Young a high risk sex offender. He just got out of prison on March 30.

Those who live nearby are concerned.

"My wife and I, just two days ago I said see that barbed wire on there? That don't hold them people in there," recalled neighbor Henry Shanks. "Two days ago I told that to my wife. You can ask her."

Young has several tattoos: "South Park for Life" on right upper arm; "Evelyn" on neck; "Mom" on right chest; "Audra" on left chest; numerous incision scars on left wrist. [SEE MORE PHOTOS OF YOUNG ]

He served eight years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) for aggravated assault, and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, with both charges carrying a sexual element. Young also spent 20 years in the TDCJ for sexual assault of a child and attempted aggravated sexual assault.

The Southeast Texas Transitional Center houses nearly 500 men convicted of a variety of criminal offenses. The department of corrections says Young was civilly committed there upon his release from prison. But the folks who run the facility say those who are living here have served their time in prison. They do not consider this an escape.

If you see Young or know where he might be, you are urged to call 911.

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