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Forum Communications, Published August 28 2012

Roseau County prisoner on the loose

WANNASKA, Minn. - Authorities in Roseau County of northern Minnesota were searching Tuesday for an escaped prisoner.

According to the sheriff’s department, Kevin Leigh Martin Jr., 32, escaped Monday morning while working with a sentence-to-serve program work crew near Wannaska.

Martin escaped while the crew made a stop at a convenience store in Wannaska, said Sheriff Steve Gust.

A Wannaska woman, who Gust said is believed to be Martin’s girlfriend, has been taken into custody. She had not been formally charged by Tuesday afternoon.

Authorities have recovered a van used in the escape.

Martin, described as American Indian, 6-foot 1-inch tall and weighs 205 pounds, had been held since Aug. 16 on a charge of felony vehicle theft.

Authorities were going door-to-door Tuesday in a residential area about 3 miles southeast of Wannaska, according to the sheriff, although he said the suspect may have gone to the Red Lake Reservation, where he lives.

Wannaska is 60 to 70 miles from the reservation.

The sheriff’s department also is working with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and the Red Lake Reservation.