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Man reportedly escapes from Richland County Sheriff's HQ

A man reportedly escaped from police custody in the Region 4 Richland County Sheriff's Department headquarters, just north of Columbia, South Carolina. Escaping from custody can give the appearance of guilt and make criminal defense more difficult.

Police claim not to know how he accomplished the feat, and at the time of this writing he has not been re-apprehended. Police were holding the 31-year-old man on suspicion of having taken part in a brazen home break-in.

Officials say that the man busted into a residence on Bettys Lane's 2800 block, located near St. Andrews Road, at about 3 a.m. According to reports, a weapon was fired, but fortunately no one was hurt despite the fact that several people were in the home at the time of the alleged burglary.

Police say they have the weapon, even if they no longer have the suspect.

Charges for gun crimes often are often brought in addition to other criminal charges when suspects use guns in conjunction with illegal activity. The long-term consequences of a gun crime can be even more serious if the suspect has a prior criminal conviction or is still on probation.

It is not clear whether the suspect here has a criminal record or if he possessed the gun illegally. In addition to a likely criminal charge relating to the escape, he is facing charges for home invasion and kidnapping.

The suspect, who is 6 feet 1 inches tall and weighs in at only 154 pounds, allegedly escaped on foot and headed to a house on Crestland Drive, where he grabbed some clothes and canine bedding before fleeing further. Authorities do not know whether the Crestland Drive house is the man's residence. He was last seen wearing all black.

Police do have custody of two others whom they believe were involved.

Source: The State, "Suspect in Columbia home invasion escapes police custody," Nov. 3, 2012

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