One of two daring jail escapees appeared in court Friday, December 19, after being captured by the FBI 11:30 pm the previous night. According to FBI spokeswoman Joan Hyde, Joseph “Jose” Banks,37, was apprehended unarmed and without incident in an apartment complex on Chicago’s north side.
Banks’ arrest stems from he and cellmate Kenneth Conley‘s, 38, escape from Metropolitan Correctional Center early Tuesday morning. The duo reportedly created a hole in a wall at the bottom of their narrow cell window, squeezed through the space and scaled 17 stories down using makeshift a rope from strips of cloth to escape.
Videotape evidence suggests that the pair hailed a taxi a few blocks from the jail after making their escape. NBC Chicago reports that Banks and Conley were next spotted in Tinley Park, IL, about 25 miles from MCC.
Banks will be charged with escape, which carries a sentence of up to five years and $250,000 fine. Banks had previously been convicted in federal court of four counts of bank robbery this month, each of which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
A preliminary hearing date was set for January 3.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office says Banks will return to the MCC, but it is the prison officials’ discretion whether he stays there. Kenneth Conley, who also pleaded guilty to bank robbery in October, remains at large and is said to be possibly armed and dangerous.
Read more about the incident here. See photo in the gallery below
Photo: Fox Chicago