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Manhunt Still On For Jail Escapee
10/16/2009

The manhunt continues in western Kansas for the inmate who escaped the Kearny County Jail in Lakin Monday night.

It’s now three days into the search for Mitchell Ebihara and despite several possible spottings of the escapee, he had not been caught.

Wednesday morning a Lakin man called authorities, saying someone matching Ebihara’s description asked him for a ride, but he refused. A few hours later, KHP saw a man walking down the railroad tracks about a half mile east of town, wrapped in a blanket.

“Had a blanket over his head, and then radioed out, kind of set up a perimeter, we kind of walked inwards and looked, but we never found him,” said Lt. Josh Biera with the Kansas Highway Patrol.

With a dangerous criminal on the loose, officials are leaving no stone unturned. In addition to a ground search, using horses, dogs and ATV’s, authorities are also searching from above, using paragliders and local planes.

"We checked every residence, every building whether it was occupied or not between Deerfied and Lakin south of the river,” said Lt. David Smith with the Garden City Police Department.

Officers say the recent wet weather has made tracking difficult, but it has also made it harder for Ebihara to travel very far. Authorities say some footprints were found near the riverbed in Holcomb about 17 miles east of Lakin.

When asked how the dangerous criminal was able to escape custody, the Kearny County sheriff said, “Obviously jail policy was not followed and we’re looking into that. But right now, our main focus is finding Ebihara.”

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