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Suspect Charged With Stealing Guns From Army Reserve Center Escapes From Jail

January 03, 2017

James Morales, a 35-year-old former Army reservist who was charged with stealing 16 guns from a U.S. Army Reserve Center in Worcester, R.I., escaped from a detention center over the weekend. Morales was discovered missing from the Wyatt Correctional Center in Central Falls, Rhode Island on Saturday evening and police suspect he may be in the Massachusetts area.

U.S. Marshall Jamie Hainsworth said Morales scaled a building and climbed over a razor wire to escape before stealing a car from the parking lot of a B.K. Mart on Route 1 in Attleboro. He added that officials believe Morales is wounded and likely bleeding as a result of contact with the wire.

State Police Spokesman Dave Procopio said, “Earlier this morning Massachusetts State Police K-9 unit, Trooper Tim Blackwell and K9 Klaas, picked up Morales track in Attleboro and tracked to the area under a Route 95 overpass near the Rhode Island line, where the track ended. At that location police found what appears to be discarded prison clothing. The clothing had blood on it.”

Morales is six-feet tall, weighs 175-pounds, has brown eyes and was bald with a large eagle tattoo on the left side of his neck at the time of his escape. On Sunday night authorities stated that they had recovered the green Chevy Lumina with Rhode Island license plates believed to be Morales’, but that the suspect himself was still missing. Authorities said Morales, who is from Cambridge himself, also has connections to the Framingham and New York City.

Massachusetts State Police trooper Matthew Guarino said, “It’s not too often we have escapees from this type of facility, so he definitely could be dangerous.” Police warned the community to be on the lookout for Morales and call to 911 immediately if they see him.

Morales is accused of stealing six assault rifles and 10 handguns from the Lincoln Stoddard Army Reserve Center in 2015. He is scheduled to be in court for the weapons theft on Friday, and also faces charges for an unrelated child rape charge.