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Chicago jail escapee sentenced to 36 years

CHICAGO - A bank robber who escaped from Chicago's high-rise Metropolitan Correctional Center has been sentenced to 36 years in prison.

In December 2012, Joseph Banks and an accomplice smashed a hole in a cell window and climbed down 20 stories using a rope fashioned from bed sheets. Banks was caught two days later on the city's North Side. Kenneth Conley was captured two weeks later.

Banks escaped five days after he was convicted of armed robbery of two banks and attempting to rob two others in 2007 and 2008. Prosecutors say about $547,000 stolen in the robberies remains missing.

In sentencing the 39-year-old Banks on Wednesday, U.S. District Judge Rebecca Pallmeyer ordered him to pay $589,000 in restitution.

The U.S. attorney's office says Banks must serve 85 percent of his sentence.

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