Escapee caught in Iowa after more than 40 years on the loose

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Ronald Dwaine Carnes photo from Linn County Jail

An Iowa man, who escaped from prison in 1973 while he was serving time for robbery, was captured in Waterloo.

Ronald Carnes, 69, was listed as an escapee by the North Carolina Department of Corrections.  Prison records show Carnes was sentenced in November 1970 to 20 years in prison after he was convicted of robbery with a dangerous weapon, and he was projected to be released in 1983.

Carnes allegedly escaped from prison August 4, 1973.

“Following his alleged escape, Carnes allegedly lived under the identities of two different persons to avoid detection by law enforcement. Carnes also allegedly used the two identities to collect Social Security benefits and to apply for Iowa drivers’ licenses,” said a statement from U.S. Attorney Kevin Techau.

Police said they found birth certificates for both identities, as well as a handgun and ammunition, when they searched Carnes’ home in Waterloo April 14, 2014.  Carnes has been charged with misuse of Social Security numbers, aggravated identity theft, possession of a firearm by a felon and being a fugitive from justice.

Court records show Carnes was charged April 15 with fraud and making a false application for a driver’s license in Black Hawk County, Iowa.  Those charges were dropped the same day he was charged in federal court.

Carnes appeared in federal court, in Cedar Rapids, Thursday, June 26, 2014.  He was held without bond and jail records show he was in custody in the Linn County Jail.

Carnes was next scheduled to appear in court July 9.


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