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Hutchinson work release inmate walks off job, is still missing

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Saturday, June 7, 2014, at 8:36 p.m.


A Hutchinson prison inmate on work release at an egg-processing plant apparently walked off the site Saturday afternoon, according to the Kansas Department of Corrections.

Agency spokesman Jeremy Barclay said that when officials arrived at Cal-Maine, 625 Ave. K in Chase, to retrieve inmates between 4:30 and 5 p.m. at the end of their workday, Christopher M. Ward, 43, “did not report to be picked up.”

“At that time, we began our usual protocol of searching the worksite,” Barclay said. Ward was not found.

Barclay said Ward is from Sedgwick County and may be headed to Wichita. He is white, 5 feet, 8 inches tall, weighs about 180 pounds and has blue eyes and blond hair.

Anyone who spots him is asked to call their local Crime Stoppers number, 911 or Hutchinson Correctional Facility at 620-662-2321.

Ward was among 31 inmates working at Cal-Maine when he disappeared, Barclay said. The company employees 38 inmates on work release from Hutchinson Correctional Facility, he said.

Ward has been on work release for about two years, Barclay said.

Ward is serving prison time for a string of Sedgwick County crimes in 2007, including burglary, felony theft, aggravated burglary and fleeing or attempting to elude police, corrections records show. He has just less than two years left on his sentence.

Reach Amy Renee Leiker at 316-268-6644 or aleiker@wichitaeagle.com. Follow her on Twitter: @amyreneeleiker.

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