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Man Charged With Stealing Army Reserve Guns Escapes From Jail

CENTRAL FALLS, R.I. (CBS/AP) — A former Army reservist charged with stealing 16 guns from a U.S. Army Reserve Center in Worcester escaped from a detention center and may be in Massachusetts.

Thirty-five-year-old James Morales was discovered missing from the Wyatt Correctional Center in Central Falls, Rhode Island Saturday evening.

James Morales
James Morales (Image credit: Mass. State Police)

U.S. Marshall Jamie Hainsworth said Morales scaled a building and climbed over a razor wire to escape. He added that officials believe Morales is wounded and bleeding from the razor wire.

State Police spokesman Dave Procopio said Morales then stole a car from the parking lot of a BK Mart on Route 1 in Attleboro Saturday night.

"Earlier this morning Massachusetts State Police K-9 unit, Trooper Tim Blackwell and K9 Klaas, picked up Morales track in Attleboro and tracked to the area under a Route 95 overpass near the Rhode Island line, where the track ended. At that location police found what appears to be discarded prison clothing. The clothing had blood on it," Procopio said.  He told WBZ-TV the clothes were found around 5 a.m. Sunday.

Morales is six-feet tall, weighs 175-pounds, has brown eyes and was bald at the time of his escape.

He has a large eagle tattoo on the left side of his neck.

James Morales tattoos
James Morales eagle tattoo. (Image credit: Mass. State Police)

Sunday night, authorities said they had recovered the green Chevy Lumina with Rhode Island license plates, but that Morales was still being sought.

Police said Morales, who is from Cambridge, also has connections to the Framingham area and New York City.

Authorities urge anyone who spots him to call 911 immediately.

"It's not too often we have escapees from this type of facility, so he definitely could be dangerous," Massachusetts State Police trooper Matthew Guarino told WBZ.

The FBI says Morales stole six assault rifles and 10 handguns from the Lincoln Stoddard Army Reserve Center in Worcester in 2015. He is scheduled to make a court appearance in connection with the weapons theft on Friday.

He also faces unrelated state child rape charges.

(TM and © Copyright 2017 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2017 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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