Lawton inmate walks away from work detail, police continue search

Lawton_Lawton Police continue their search for a city inmate who walked away from a work detail on Tuesday.  They say James Bainbridge was a city trusty, and was working for the city at Robinson's Landing just after noon when he disappeared.  Police say he was serving time for a DUI and had only 16 more days left to serve.

Police say Bainbridge had been arrested more than six times on charges such as possession of meth, bogus checks, and driving with a suspended license.  They say he doesn't pose a real threat to the community, but still were coming the area where he disappeared, and going door to door to warn the community, and give his description.

Along with other trustys, police say Bainbridge was working alongside city employees as he had proven he could be trusted.  "On this occasion, they did take a few people from our jail section out to the lake to so some work," said Lawton Police Captain Will Hines.  "Unfortunately, they picked the wrong guy, and during a work detail he did walk off."

Although police say they take a missing city inmate seriously, Hines says the situation could have been much worse had Bainbridge committed more serious crimes.  "If it was a more severe crime he wouldn't be in our jail - he would be in a county jail," he said.  "So, any type of felonies would be across the street (at the Comanche County Detention Center)."

Hines says he can't understand why Bainbridge walked away.  "He had sixteen days left on his sentence, so he was almost gone."  When trustys disappear, Hines says that not only scare the public and make it difficult for law enforcement, but they also punish themselves.  "It doesn't make much sense," he said.  "Go ahead and serve your time, because now we'll have another charge of escape that will tack on to that, so it'll be more time, and the odds of him getting to go out on trusty status will be slim to none at this point."

Hines says what's even more surprising about Bainbridge's escape is that by serving as a trusty, for each and every day he worked, eight days of his sentence were reduced.  Hines says if he had worked only two more days, Bainbridge would have been released.

Bainbridge has some distinctive tattoos.  On his right arm he has an eagle and a swastika, and on his left - the Grim Reaper.

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