Facebook

Twitter

Tumblr

iTunes

RSS

HEAR THIS HOUR'S UPDATE
News Pages
« Severe Winter Weather Upends Holiday Travel Plans | Main | Fathers Stand Guard Outside Kids' Schools After Newtown Shooting »
Friday
Dec212012

Chicago Prison Escape: One of Two Bank Robbers Arrested

Kevin Horan/Stone(CHICAGO) -- One of the two Chicago bank robbers who escaped from a high-rise federal jail in Chicago this week using a makeshift rope to rappel down the building has been arrested.

Joseph "Jose" Banks, 37, was arrested late Thursday around 11:30 p.m. local time without incident in Chicago, according to an FBI news release.

Agents and officers from the Chicago FBI's Violent Crimes Task Force, along with officers from the Chicago Police Department, made the arrest.  Banks was unarmed.

Authorities are still looking for Kenneth Conley, who escaped the Metropolitan Correctional Center with Banks sometime early Tuesday morning.

Banks and Conley, 38, were last seen Monday at 10 p.m. during a prison head count at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in downtown Chicago's Loop district.  The two borrowed a move from the film Escape From Alcatraz by stuffing their beds with clothes in the shape of bodies.

The men then broke the window of their cell at the federal prison, shimmying out a hole only inches wide, and scaled 17 stories down the side of the building, all the while holding onto a rope of sheets and towels taken from the prison.  The rope was strong enough to support the two, one weighing 165 pounds the other 185 pounds.

At 7 a.m. the next morning, as employees arrived at work, they noticed the sheets left dangling from the building and discovered that Conley and Banks were missing.

Investigators said surveillance cameras captured Banks and Conley getting into a taxi minutes after their brazen escape.  They entered the taxi at the intersection of Michigan Avenue and Congress Street, just blocks away from the jail.

The men then showed up at the home of Sandy Conley, Kenneth Conley's mother, in the Chicago suburb of Tinley Park, Ill., on Tuesday morning, only five hours after they escaped.

"He was in the house for two minutes," Sandy Conley told ABC News on Thursday.  "I can't tell you if he was armed.  I made him get out."

Banks, nicknamed "the second-hand bandit" because of the used clothing disguises he wore in several robberies, was convicted of armed robbery last week.  His parting words to his judge, Rebecca Pallmeyer, were, "I'll be seeking retribution as well as damages ... you'll hear from me."

Conley had been in jail for several years.

Pallmeyer and others who presided over the men's cases have reportedly been offered protection.  The FBI and U.S. Marshals were offering a combined reward of $60,000 to find the inmates and bring them back into custody.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio