Inmate Who Left Law Enforcement Training Academy Captured in Sharp County

MARCH 28, 2006 - Posted at 4:06 p.m. CST

ASH FLAT, AR - A prison inmate who walked away from an unguarded work release assignment Sunday night has been caught in Region 8.

State Police say 37-year-old George Nelson, Jr. left the Arkansas Law Enforcement Training Academy about 8:30 Sunday night and apparently stole a green and white 1990 Chevrolet pick-up that was parked behind the barracks.

Arkansas Department of Corrections spokeswoman Dina Tyler says local authorities caught Nelson in Sharp County this afternoon.

She said Nelson was walking down a road by himself and local law enforcement questioned him, then arrested him without incident.

Nelson was one of 15 inmates who live in barracks and work at the academy.

The barracks are not locked, and the prison spokeswoman says Nelson will be moved to a more secure prison.

Nelson was carrying a ten-year sentence for drug-related convictions in Fulton County.  He had been housed at the academy since April 2004.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)