UPDATE: Escaped prisoner apprehended near Baraboo
Marcus P. Ebbers, the escapee from the St. Croix County Correctional Center, has been apprehended.
Ebbers, who was enrolled in the Challenge Incarceration Program in New Richmond, walked away from the facility on May 22.
In a news release, Sauk County Sheriff Chip Meister said Ebbers was riding a bicycle against traffic without any lamps lit at 3 a.m. on Friday, May 25, just south of Baraboo on U.S. Highway 12.
While being questioned, Ebbers dropped the bike and began to run, according to the release.
After being Tasered, Ebbers was apprehended and transferred to Sauk County Jail. While in custody, deputies learned that Ebbers was an escapee from the St. Croix County Correctional Center in New Richmond.
It's still unclear as to why Ebbers walked away from the facility, said Linda Eggert, spokeswoman for the Department of Corrections.
"He was scheduled to be released in October," she said.
What happens to Ebbers now is up to the court system, she said.
Ebbers is currently being held in Sauk County and will need to face charges resisting or obstructing an officer in Sauk County before he's returned to St. Croix County, Eggert said.
When he is returned to St. Croix County he'll face charges of escape and his entire record will be reviewed.
"If he's convicted of escape, it's likely his classification will be changed," Eggert said.
That means it's unlikely he'll be returned to the correctional center, which is a minimum security facility.
The last time an inmate walked away from the St. Croix County facility was in 2006, Eggert said.
"It's very rare," she said. "This is considered to be the final phase of their incarceration. This is the final step to being integrated back into society."
Eggert said the minimum security facility in New Richmond does not have a fence and none of the doors are locked.
"We do have security measures in place, but if they (the inmates) chose to escape, they're not scaling walls or digging trenches," she said. "They're literally walking away."
The state's challenge incarceration program is intended to give inmates the education and skills they need to re-enter society. It includes rigorous physical activity, manual labor and military training, as well as alcohol and drug treatment and other programs.
Ebbers was in his fifth month of an 18-month term for bail-jumping and possession of THC from Racine County.
He is due back in Sauk County Court June 26.