Douglas James Alward: A Man of Many Escapes

August 25 2010, 9:07 AM

On Sunday, Douglas James Alward became the first inmate to escape from the Sterling Correctional Facility in the state prison's 11-year history. Since then, a manhunt has been launched for Alward, who was serving time for attempted murder, assault, burglary, kidnapping, and prior escape. The FBI is now involved, and the 48-year-old man is considered extremely dangerous, notes The Denver Post. The Department of Corrections is offering a $15,000 reward for tips leading to Alward's arrest, and authorities have taken to knocking on doors in small towns surrounding the prison, more than 100 miles northeast of Denver, reports The Associated Press. Oddly, Alward had just become eligible for parole as he absconded, Westword reported earlier this week.

Over the years, Alward---first incarcerated in 1980 for attempted murder, assault, and burglary---has proven a slippery character. That year, he escaped from Buena Vista Correctional Facility after running from a prison bus with an inner tube and jumping into the Arkansas River. He was caught floating a short time later. In 1985, he broke into a storage area in the Colorado Territorial Facility and made his way out through a hole in the wall, before scaling a wall with boards and a rope and then stealing a dump truck and crashing it through a gate. Authorities caught up with him about five weeks later in Arizona. Then, in 1991, Alward overpowered a guard during a court appearance at the Fremont County Jail with the help of another inmate, grabbing a deputy's gun and kidnapping a woman he later released in Colorado Springs, 40 miles away. A week later, Alward kidnapped a man in Idaho after firing shots at a police officer. He was captured the next day in Oregon following a police chase.

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