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Five inmates escape maximum-security prison

JOLIET, Ill. - Authorities scoured the Chicago area Monday for five inmates who escaped from a maximum-security state prison by cutting through two sets of bars. Three of the escapees were convicted murderers and described as extremely dangerous.

A sixth escapee, Tommy Munoz, was captured Sunday near his cousin's home in Chicago, and the other five also were believed to have headed for the city, said corrections spokesman Nic Howell. The six fled Sunday from the Joliet Correctional Facility in northern Illinois.

"We have no reason to think that these guys are out of state or are not in the general vicinity of Chicago," Howell said.

Early Sunday morning, the inmates apparently cut through bars on their cells, broke a window and cut through bars outside it, then climbed a low fence and fled the prison undetected, Howell said.

About 100 corrections officers and officials were involved in the case - either helping with the search or the internal investigation and security review at the prison.

The prison houses 1,300 inmates, 500 more than it was intended to hold, but Howell said he didn't know if the crowded conditions contributed to the escape.

The six prisoners were last accounted for at 4:55 a.m. Sunday. The escape was discovered during a 7 a.m. head count.

The men escaped from segregation cells, where they were being kept because of disciplinary problems. Four of them were doubled up, two to a cell, and the other two were alone in their cells.

Still free Monday night were: Daniel Johnson, 24, and Dave Rodriguez, 21, imprisoned for murder; James F. Allen, 40, imprisoned for three murders; and Terry W. Colburn, 21, and Ronald Roach, in his 20s, imprisoned for burglary.

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