Facial recognition database leads feds to fugitive 37 years after prison escape

A man who escaped from federal prison in Kansas in 1977 while serving a 23-year sentence for a premeditated murder and aggravated assault committed while he was a U.S. Army private was arrested in Florida on Thursday.

James Robert Jones was tracked down, nearly 37 years later, after the Army asked the U.S. Marshals Service for help and it found him through a facial recognition database, using an old Fort Leavenworth prison photograph, according to NBC 6 South Florida and the Sun Sentinel.

Jones had obtained a Florida driver’s license in 1981 under the name Bruce Walter Keith, but used his real address in Deerfield Beach on documents. Officials said he admitted his identity after he was fingerprinted following his arrest.

At a Broward County court hearing Friday he was ordered held without bond on charges of escape, homicide and military desertion.

The articles don’t include any comment from his legal counsel, but Jones said after his arrest “that he knew this would catch up with him one day,” Barry Golden of the Marshals Service told NBC 6, adding: “After all these years, the first words out of his mouth were, ‘I knew this would catch up with me one day.’”

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