Man who escaped Calif. prison in fire truck caught

Published 11:00 am Wednesday, January 4, 2012

SAN DIEGO — Authorities say a man who escaped a state prison in San Diego in a fire truck on New Year’s Day has been captured.

The Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility said 51-year-old Thomas Kelley was taken into custody Tuesday morning at a trolley station in suburban Lemon Grove.

Authorities say Kelley was assigned to the prison fire crew. They say he fled in the prison fire truck and abandoned the vehicle in suburban Spring Valley.

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Kelley was assigned to a minimum-security part of the prison. He had violated parole for vehicle theft.

Prison spokesman Lt. Patrick Logan says the San Diego County district attorney’s office may decide to charge Kelley with the escape.