Murder suspect recaptured after escaping Illinois jail

State News

CARLINVILLE, Ill. (AP) – A southern Illinois man charged with first-degree murder is back behind bars after escaping from the Macoupin County Jail in Carlinville, authorities said Tuesday.

William D. Kavanaugh was captured late Monday about 14 miles (22.53 kilometers) away from the jail in Shipman, Illinois. Sheriff Shawn Kahl said deputies located Kavanaugh, 35, in a trailer home with a female acquaintance after receiving a tip. Kahl says Kavanaugh surrendered peacefully after deputies surrounded the trailer.

Kahl said he and jail personnel were astounded by the way Kavanaugh escaped from the jail late Easter Sunday. He said the crawl space and other spaces the detainee crawled through to get to a window to make his escape are small and no one knows how he navigated the passage.

A door lock was broken and no one realized it before the escape, Kahl said, adding the escape was planned.

Kahl said it’s the first escape in memory since the jail opened 31 years ago. Changes have been made to prevent a similar escape, he said.

Kavanaugh and a Granite City woman are accused in the shooting death of a man in Woodburn on New Year’s Eve in 2015. The murder charges were announced last summer. Kavanaugh had been held since then in the Macoupin County, located about 50 miles (80 km) north of St. Louis, Missouri.


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