GRAPEVINE (CBS 11 NEWS) – CBS 11 has been investigating whether Florida police officers made mistakes that allowed a dangerous convict to escape in North Texas.
Alberto Morales has been on the run for three days and Florida authorities now say the violent getaway was clearly well planned and executed.
A heavily armed task force of Grapevine Police and U.S. Marshals canvassed a neighborhood not far from the Wal-Mart parking lot where Alberto Morales stabbed a Florida police detective before fleeing on foot.
It’s now believed the serial rapist planned to disrupt a flight to Las Vegas for a court hearing so officers would have to take him by ground.
As CBS 11 first reported on Wednesday, a security camera shows the officers spent more than an hour taking turns going back and forth into a Wal-Mart when the prisoner stabbed detective Jaime Pardinas repeatedly with a homemade knife.
Authorities would not comment on whether proper policies and procedures were followed.
“We’re not going to comment on the specifics of the incident that’s under investigation,” says Chip Iglesias, Miami-Dade Deputy Mayor.
The escape has drawn criticism.
A longtime fugitive task force member in Dallas who wants to remain anonymous tells CBS 11 the officers did not appear prepared for transporting the prisoner by vehicle.
He says Grapevine Police should have been notified beforehand and used as backup.
He also says plastic handcuffs would have been more secure than shackles when the decision was made to put him in a car.
“We’re going to complete overhaul of our policies to see what we can improve because obviously it wasn’t the perfect policy because he got away right?,” says Juan Perez, Miami-Dade Police Deputy Director.
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