State police yesterday captured a 16-year-old murderer four hours after he escaped from prison security guards at Baltimore-Washington International Airport as he was boarding a plane.
Authorities said David Manuel Bailey, convicted of second degree murder in Washington earlier this year, was on his way to a Colorado treatment center when he bolted after his handcuffs were removed near a United Airlines terminal shortly after 8 a.m.
The youth ran through the terminal and a front door. Police lost him on Interstate 195, the main road leading into the airport. "He made it out very quickly," said Sgt. Gregory M. Shipley, a state police spokesman.
State police from BWI and surrounding barracks searched with dogs and helicopters for four hours and investigated two claims by area residents that the youth was in the Harmans area.
At 12:15 p.m., police said Trooper Larry Brown spotted the youth hiding in tall grass behind the Maryland Department of FTC Transportation headquarters at Elm Road on the airport grounds.
Sergeant Shipley said the boy ran back toward the airport and was found under a pine tree near the valet parking lot by Trooper John Petryszak, who arrested him.
State police turned the boy over to authorities in Washington, who said they will ask the juvenile courts to decide whether to charge him with escape. He was back in the Oak Hill maximum security juvenile prison in Laurel last night.
Larry Brown -- no relation to the state police trooper by that name -- a spokesman for the D.C. Department of Human Services, which oversees Oak Hill, said officials are reviewing the procedures used to transport the youth. But he said a preliminary investigation indicates nothing improper occurred. Mr. Brown said standard procedure calls for a prisoner's handcuffs to be removed before boarding an airplane. The spokesman said the youth ran away when the cuffs were removed at the entrance to the boarding ramp. He said the youth was accompanied by his father, two Oak Hill security guards, a counselor and a social worker.
Once on the airplane, scheduled to fly non-stop to Denver, the boy was to be accompanied only by the social worker, Mr. Brown said. Officials from the treatment center were to meet them in Denver.
The boy was convicted of second degree murder earlier this year. Because of emotional problems, Mr. Brown said, the boy was to spend two years at the High Plains Youth Center, in Brush, Colorado.
District police refused to comment on the murder charges, arguing that they could not release information about juveniles. But a D.C. government source said the boy stabbed another person several times.