Escaped killer back behind bars

Steve Manderson recaptured; son urged to give himself up

Convicted killer and serial escape artist Steve Manderson was back in police custody Wednesday as the net closed in on his son – the last of the three escaped prisoners still on the run. 

Manderson, 44, who has escaped six times, was captured in Frank Sound just before 5 a.m. on Wednesday after a joint police and prison services operation. 

Police arrested two other people during the same operation on unrelated drug and handling stolen property offences. 

Last week, police found and captured Chadwick Dale in North Side. He broke out of prison with the Mandersons on Aug. 14. 

Authorities believe the three men stuck together during their time on their run, sleeping rough some of the time, and that Marcus Manderson is now alone and potentially in danger. 

Prison director Neil Lavis said he was delighted with the success, so far, of the joint police and prison operation and he urged Marcus, 24, to give himself up. 

“It is clear that he will be caught sooner rather than later,” Mr. Lavis said. “He is out there on his own now and it is just a matter of time. He needs to think about his position and whether or not he wants to turn himself in.” 

It is not clear if Marcus Manderson, who was sentenced to 10 years in prison in April for possession of an unlicensed firearm, has access to food or water. Police say there are serious concerns for his welfare. 

“It’s now been two weeks since the three men escaped from prison,” said Detective Chief Inspector Malcolm Kay, who is leading the manhunt involving more than 30 officers.  

“Two of them have been recaptured and are now back behind bars. It’s clear that the men have been living rough and we believe that they have stayed together since the breakout.  

“Marcus will be tired and feeling vulnerable. He must know that it’s only a matter of time before he too is recaptured.” 

The three prisoners broke out of a secure recreational area at Her Majesty’s Prison at Northward on 14 August. They cut through two fences to escape. Police K-9 units initially picked up the scent but the trail went cold close to the prison.  

Dale, a Jamaican national who was sentenced last month to six years in prison for violent offences including stabbing a woman with a screwdriver during a beach robbery, was caught in bushes close in Cayman Kai on Aug. 24. Officers with machetes hacked through the undergrowth as the police helicopter circled overhead during an eight-hour police operation to recapture the fugitive.  

Details of how Steve Manderson was caught remained scarce Wednesday, though police indicated that he had been sleeping rough. 

Manderson, who is in the 20th year of a life sentence for the murder of a prison employee in 1993, has escaped custody on six occasions. The last time he broke out was in 2005, when he was on the run for five months. 

Mr. Lavis said prison staff were determined to make sure this was the last time he escaped. All three prisoners, including Marcus Manderson, if and when he is caught, will be put under the highest possible security conditions. 

Government and prison officials have already acknowledged that money will need to be spent to upgrade the security infrastructure at Northward. 

Mr. Lavis said, “I have every intention of ensuring he (Steve Manderson) is held in the highest security we can manage. All three will be held in our most secure area. 

He added, “Clearly, Steve Manderson is the most high profile of the three prisoners and it is good to know he is back in custody.” 

Eric Bush, chief officer in the Ministry of Home Affairs, hailed prison and police officers for the arrest. 

“All praise goes to our brave men and women in the police and prison services. It has been a great joint effort,” Mr. Bush said. 

Inspector Kay said the support of the public had been influential in the recapture of Dale and Manderson, and he urged people to continue to report sightings as well as petty thefts that may lead investigators to the final fugitive. 

He added, “It’s not known if he has access to food or water and once again I would ask property owners and residents to report any suspicious activity or thefts from their premises.  

“The support we’ve had from the community has been great,” Mr. Kay said. “I know that people will be encouraged by the results we’ve had so far and I am confident that the joint operations with our colleagues in the prison service will ensure that the remaining prisoner is brought to justice.” 

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Steve Manderson escaped from Northward prison on Aug. 14.