State prison inmate escapes from Baltimore work crew

Man's wife receives threatening call from him

July 09, 2004|By Lynn Anderson | Lynn Anderson,SUN STAFF

Authorities were searching yesterday for a state prison inmate who escaped this week from a work crew in Baltimore.

Corrections officials met with the inmate's wife, who received a surprise telephone call from him telling her that he had escaped from the Baltimore City Correctional Center and was coming to find her.

Roderick Dunham, 30, who had served most of a five-year sentence for handgun violations, slipped away from a work crew at 2:45 p.m. Tuesday, Priscilla Doggett, a spokeswoman for the state Division of Correction, said late last night.

It was unknown last night how or where Dunham got away from the work crew or what it was doing.

"Depending on the area of the city, [inmates] sometimes can walk off," Doggett said. "But that doesn't mean that they aren't being watched."

Frightened by the call she received early Wednesday, the wife, Towanda Dunham, called the correctional center to find out whether her husband was there. An official at the jail told her incorrectly that he was, Doggett said.

Towanda Dunham, who said she had sent divorce papers to her husband days earlier, told WBFF-TV (Channel 45) that the person she talked to at the jail was "nasty" to her.

Corrections officials are investigating. "We are trying to find out who answered the call," Doggett said.

Corrections officials told Towanda Dunham yesterday to tell police about her concerns regarding her husband, Doggett said.

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