Federal Prisoner Escapee Caught
By: Arnold Wyrick
By: Arnold Wyrick
MARION, IL --U.S. Marshall's and Heartland police began hunting down 51 year old Michael Titzer within minutes after he was reported missing on Wednesday evening. Guards at the Federal minimum security work camp near Marion noted Titzer's absence during a head count around 9:30 that evening. The work camp is located right behind one of the nations most secure Federal prisons, unlike the prison there are no fences, or guard towers at the work camp.
Kevin Murphy Executive Assistant for the U.S. Penitentiary tells Heartland News that the facility is designed that way.
"These inmates are here on the honor system. We don't worry too much about security fences, we don't have guard towers. It's not necessary here," says Kevin Murphy.
That's because the inmates are considered non-violent and they're serving short sentences, compared to other Federal prisoners.
But Murphy says they do walk away from the camp.
"We realize that a few inmates will walk away. But they need to understand that when they walk away, there's a price to pay. And we will seek prosecution,"said Murphy.
Michael Titzer had just arrived at the facility on June 6th, to serve a 16 month sentence for Filing False Claims Against The United States, Forging a United States Treasury Check, and Filing a False Individual Income Tax Return.
"So he was scheduled to be released in less then a year. Now when he's caught it'll be up to the U.S. Attorney's office to prosecute him. And of the 6 previous inmates who've escaped 5 of them have been prosecuted," says Murphy.
U.S. Marshall's caught up to Michael Titzer around 4:00 pm Thursday afternoon on Interstate 44 near Joplin, Missouri. Authorities say he was traveling with his wife at the time.
If Titzer is found guilty on the escape charge, a judge could add another 3 to 5 years to Titzer's time behind bars.