Escaped N.C. inmate caught in Halifax County

From staff reportsSeptember 27, 2012 

James Ladd

COURTESY N.C. DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC SAFETY

The convicted murderer who walked away from a Halifax County prison farm over the weekend was recaptured just before 11 this morning.

State corrections officers and Alcohol Law Enforcement agents found James J. Ladd about 10 miles from the farm where he escaped Sunday, according to a corrections spokesman. They were following up on a tip from a motorist on N.C. 125 near Scotland Neck who reported seeing a man running from the woods toward a house.

Ladd, 51, was found crouched in an open garage attached to the house and was arrested without a struggle.

The arrest ended a four-day search that began when Ladd was reported missing around noon Sunday, after the tractor he had been operating was found abandoned in a field outside the minimum security Tillery Correctional Center in Halifax County.

Ladd was serving three life sentences for the 1980 robbery and shooting deaths of two men in Yadkin County. He became eligible for parole after serving 30 years but was denied release in January 2011, according to records. His next parole review is scheduled for 2014.

Ladd will face charges for escape from prison and internal prison disciplinary charges, according to the corrections department.

Records show Ladd was the seventh North Carolina inmate to escape in 2012. All the others also have been recaptured.

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