Two men who escaped from the Leavenworth Correctional Facility in Lansing earlier this week are back in custody after, in essence, turning themselves in to a gas station clerk, police said.
Chad Amack and Matthew Allender were reported missing from the jail on Tuesday evening, but were picked-up a little over 24 hours later at a Kansas City, Kansas, gas station near 5th and Armstrong. According to clerk Brenden White, the two men asked him something unexpected.
"About 10:30 p.m. two guys came in, stood right there, and told me, 'We escaped from Lansing Prison, would you call the cops to turn us in?'" said White. "They seemed pretty serious about wanting to go back to prison because they said they couldn't find a ride and it was really cold outside."
So White called 9-1-1, then contacted the correctional facility.
"He was very happy, said he was going to come up here and buy me a drink," said White, who said that Allender and Amack surrendered to police when officers arrived a few moments later.
The duo followed in the footsteps of Ronny Peters who escaped from the same facility in September. Peters was caught two days later. Lansing Police Chief Steve Wayman said in an area that has seven prisons in an approximately 15 mile radius, events like this are to be occasionally expected.
"Everybody wants their freedom and the people inside the walls, the inmates, they want their freedom also," said Wayman. "If there is an opportunity, they are going to think about it and they are going to exploit it any way they can."
Select medium security inmates are allowed to work outside the prison. Neighbors of the prison said a large group of prisoners were outside of the razor wire doing yard work on Tuesday. It is unclear if Allender and Amack were on that crew, or if that is how they escaped.