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‘Armed and dangerous’ inmate caught after Pennsylvania prison escape due to couple’s barking dog

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A couple checking on their barking dog helped lead police to an escaped murder suspect who used bedsheets to flee from prison, authorities have said.

Michael Burham was caught nine days after he fled from Warren County jail, Pennsylvania, on the evening of 6 July.

The 34-year-old climbed on exercise equipment, went through a window, and scaled down a rope fashioned from prison bedding.

A tip off from neighbours living in Conewango Township about a suspicious individual led to Burham’s recapture shortly before 6pm on 15 July, said Lt Col George Bivens, the deputy commissioner of operations for the Pennsylvania State Police.

The couple encountered Burham while going outside to see why their dog was barking. During a brief conversation he is reported to have mentioned camping.

Burham is the prime suspect in the murder of 34-year-old Kala Hodgkin back in May, and a related arson incident in Jamestown, New York.

He has been in prison on a $1m (£764,000) bail after being charged with kidnapping, burglary and other counts.

Authorities warned that while he was missing, Burham was considered armed and dangerous.

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Despite fleeing into the woods, Burham was found by police several hours later “tired and worn-out,” Mr Bivens said.

He was wearing his prison-issued trousers and did not have a weapon.

More than 200 officers took part in the search and up to $22,000 (£16,832) in reward money had been posted, Mr Bivens said.

An investigation into how he escaped from prison and if he had any outside help has been launched.

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