CAPS escapees caught

Two walk-aways now back in DOC custody

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Two participants in the Correctional Alternative Placement Services program "walked away" from their work release program Tuesday night.

They have since been apprehended and turned over to the Department of Corrections, a CAPS spokesman said Thursday afternoon.

CAPS is comprised of four buildings in Craig. The program provides transitional housing for inmates on work release programs.

Cindy Talkington, director of the Craig facility since 2000, did not respond to inquiries regarding the two CAPS clients who walked away.

William Palatucci, senior vice president and general counsel of Community Education Centers, of Roseland, N.J., which manages the CAPS program, limited his comments as well.

He said the two clients, whom he would not name, went to work on Dec. 19 and did not return later that night. He said CAPS then notified the Department of Corrections, and the two were later arrested without incident.

"They simply failed to return," he said.

Palatucci said CAPS clients are often minimum custody, nonviolent offenders and that the program doesn't have a history of clients fleeing.

"It's a pretty rare occurrence," he said. "We have an incident like this once or twice a year. ... I think that's a great track record, but it does sometimes occur."

Established in 1982, the program allows offenders to complete their sentence under work release rather than remain in custody.

According to the CAPS Web site, the program provides case management, problem assessment, substance abuse treatment, relapse prevention, employment assistance and life skills training.

Joshua Roberts can be reached at 824-7031, ext. 210, or jroberts@craigdailypress.com.

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