(Mountain Home) – A Mountain Home man is back in custody after he escaped about 1:45 PM Tuesday from Baxter County Reserve Deputy Thomas Pahs on U. S. Hwy 62/412 in Harrison.
Deputy Pahs had picked up 31-year-old Michael Howard Tuesday morning from the Sebastian County Jail in Fort Smith, AR and was returning him to Baxter County on an outstanding felony warrant of arrest for Revocation on an original charge of Failure to Register as a Sex Offender.
Deputy Pahs had slowed down for a traffic light near The Home Depot in Harrison, and Howard reportedly escaped from the back seat of the car while it was still slowly in motion. A press release from the Baxter County Sheriff’s Office says that Howard was handcuffed in front and was not wearing leg shackles.
Officers from the Harrison Police Department, Boone County Sheriff’s Office, and Arkansas State Police immediately began searching for Howard, and he was taken back into custody by a Boone County Deputy Sheriff around 3:10 PM in a vacant lot near the Wal-Mart Supercenter in Harrison, which is about a quarter mile from where he escaped. Howard had managed to free himself from his handcuffs by the time he was caught and had also managed to steal the deputy’s cell phone from the interior of the vehicle, and was found with the phone in his possession.
The press release says Howard has been booked into the Baxter County Detention Center at least 35 separate times since 1999.
Howard will be held without bond in the Baxter County Detention Center pending an appearance in Circuit Court. Sheriff Montgomery says that the incident will be further reviewed by supervisory staff for purposes of enhanced training for deputies in transporting prisoners.