Rhode Island facility investigates escape of inmate

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WHDH) - Escaped convict James Morales is set to appear in federal court on Friday in Providence, Rhode Island after Mass. state troopers captured him on Thursday.

SEE RELATED: State troopers catch escaped inmate in Somerville foot chase

Before Thursday afternoon, James Morales had been on the run since he escaped the Wyatt Detention Center in Central Falls, Rhode Island the night of New Year’s Eve. He led law enforcement investigators around Massachusetts, to Attleborough, Framingham and eventually to Cambridge.

A man matching Morales’ description allegedly tried to rob a Bank of America on Massachusetts Avenue in Cambridge Thursday morning, which helped police narrow their search. State Trooper Joseph Merrick chased Morales on foot in Somerville, where trooper Brendan Cain and two Somerville detectives helped bring the fugitive int custody.

Morales will appear in federal court on charges related to his escape – the escape that Wyatt Detention Center board members are trying to puzzle together.

The warden of the facility said the night of his escape, Morales climbed a basketball hoop, jumped to a rooftop and then scaled the barbed wire fence and cut it using a makeshift tool.

Every correctional officer and inmate in Morales’ cell block is being questioned, according to the facility.

Board Chairman Luke Gallant said Morales’ escape is under investigation. “I want to express in this incident, it is wholly and entirely unacceptable and inexcusable,” Gallant said.

“We understand the deep concerns, and questions community members and the media have raised since this incident. Indeed, we have many of the same exact questions.”

Gallant said he will deliver information publicly as soon as possible.

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