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Prison inmate back in custody after brief escape

The Minnesota Department of Corrections says Gerald Downs is back in custody after he briefly escaped a work site Monday in Blaine.
Credit: KARE

BLAINE, Minn. — The Minnesota Department of Corrections says inmate Gerald Downs is back in custody after briefly escaping a work site Monday in Blaine.

A statement from the MN DOC said Downs was located in north Minneapolis and subsequently arrested Thursday. The DOC's Fugitive Apprehension Unit was assisted by the Minneapolis Police Department and the Minnesota State Patrol in the search.

“We are thankful for the work of our Fugitive Apprehension Unit and for the assistance of our public safety and law enforcement partners,” said Aaron Swanum, spokesperson for the DOC.

An initial statement from the DOC Wednesday, said Downs, a minimum custody inmate at MCF-Lino Lakes, cut off his monitoring bracelet while he was on community work crew status in Blaine and escaped in a waiting vehicle.

After his arrest, authorities say, Downs has now been placed in custody at the state prison in Stillwater. 

Downs' criminal record reflects nonviolent offenses, according to the DOC, and could now face additional charges for escaping custody.

Downs was most recently sentenced to 52 months for meth possession in 2021. 

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