August 20, 2010 10:32 AM ET
A tip from an observant forest ranger led to the arrest of an Arizona prison escapee and his alleged accomplice who had been on the run since last month, authorities said late Thursday.
John McCluskey and Casslyn Mae Welch were arrested at a campground on the edge of Apache and Sitgreaves National Forests in Springerville, Arizona, according to U.S. Marshal David Gonzales.
A park ranger noticed an unattended fire at a campsite and spotted a suspicious car backed into some trees, authorities said.
A license plate check determined it matched the description of one recently stolen in New Mexico, near where a couple was murdered.
McCluskey and Welch are suspected in the killings of the couple, whose bodies were found in their burned out camper this month, according to authorities.
A SWAT team from the Apache County Sheriff’s Department was called to the campground site, where they arrested McCluskey and Welch, Gonzales said.
“Once they felt they had the opportunity, they rushed in very quickly … so they couldn’t get to their weapons,” Gonzales said.
Authorities said Welch attempted to pull out a gun tucked in the small of her back, but SWAT members were able to stop her before the weapon was fired.
McCluskey was lying down outside a domed tent and said later he should have fired at the deputies and the park ranger, Gonzales said.
“We were convinced that this would go down in a bloody shootout,” Gonzales said of how law enforcement officials had anticipated the apprehension of the couple would take place.
Lt. Col. Steve Campbell with the Arizona Department of Public Safety said everyone was relieved that the pair had been captured and a three-week manhunt had finally come to an end.
“We’re fortunate to have these individuals in custody without further loss of life,” said
McCluskey, 45, was serving a 15-year sentence for attempted second-degree murder and other charges when he and fellow convicts Tracy Province and Daniel Renwick broke out of the prison July 30, allegedly with Welch’s help.
Province and Renwick are already in custody.
Welch, who was on the visitation list for one of the inmates, threw cutting tools over a prison fence to help the men escape, corrections officials said earlier this month.
The hunt for McCluskey and Welch ranged from the Southwest to western Montana, and along the border with Canada, marshals said.
Renwick, 36, was captured August 1 in a shootout with police in Rifle, Colorado. He was serving 22 years for second-degree murder when he escaped.
Province, 42, was caught August 9 in Meeteetse, Wyoming, near Yellowstone National Park after authorities were notified by a local resident who sat and talked with Province a day earlier on the steps of a church in town. He was serving a life sentence for murder and armed robbery.
Renwick remains in the Garfield County, Colorado, jail on charges of attempted first-degree murder and eluding police, the U.S. Marshals Service said Sunday.
Authorities are working to coordinate the transport of Province back to Arizona from Wyoming — expected to occur within the next month, the marshals service said.
Last week, a warden and a security official resigned their posts at the Arizona state prison where the three inmates escaped, a spokesman for the private company that runs the facility said Sunday.
story from and video at: http://www.cnn.com/2010/CRIME/08/20/arizona.escapees/index.html?hpt=T1
John McCluskey was born on February 7th, 1965 according to http://www.justice.gov/marshals/news/chron/2010/mccluskey.pdf
2 + 7 +2+0+1+0 = 12 = his personal year (from February 7th, 2010 to February 6th, 2011) = Reversals.
12 year + 8 (August) = 20 = his personal month (from August 7th, 2010 to September 6th, 2010) = Conscience. Resolutions. Turning point. Judgement. Final decision. Final answer. Court. Accuse. Accusations. Charges. Plea. Trial. Deliberations. Verdict. Sentencing. Judges. Adjudicate. Preside. Pound. Gavel. Confession. Admission. Guilt. Punishment.
Casslyn Welch was born on July 21st, 1966 according to http://www.justice.gov/marshals/news/chron/2010/welch.pdf
7 + 21 +2+0+1+0 = 31 = her personal year (from July 21st, 2010 to July 20th, 2011) = Competition. Challenges. Tests. Scramble. Stir. Catalyst. Reaction. Risk. Controversy. Contention. Provocateur. Provoke. Instigate. Ruckus. Disturbance. Struggles. Strife. Antagonism. Agitation. Rowdy. Wild. Troublemaker. Disorderly conduct. Havoc.
31 month + 7 (July) = 38 = her personal month (from July 21st, 2010 to August 20th, 2010)
38 month + 19 (19th of the month on Thursday August 19th, 2010) = 57 = her personal day = Separation.