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Search For Escaped Inmate in Northwest Indiana Underway

A man escaped from police custody Monday morning as he was transported to Porter County Jail in northwest Indiana.

About 11:15 a.m., Michael Maldonado, 25, jumped out of the police squad car that was taking him into the jail and fled out from under the jail’s closing garage door, Porter County police said.

Video shows him jumping into the driver’s seat and exiting through the front door as officers exited to secure their weapons, police said.

Porter County Police and nearby agencies searched the area for about two hours without finding him, police said.

About 1:40 p.m., Valparaiso officers were called to Pratt Industries for a stolen gray 2013 Ford Focus, police said. They believed the incident was related to the search for Maldonado.

Maldonado remains missing, and the stolen vehicle still hasn’t been recovered, police said.

He was described as a 5-foot-10, 165 pound man with black hair and brown eyes, police said. Maldonado was handcuffed, wearing a black t-shirt, and sweatpants without shoes.

Maldonado had been taken into custody for charges stemming from a traffic stop in Portage of resisting officers, resisting officers with injury and possession of a hypodermic needle, all from a traffic stop in Portage, police said.

Anyone with info of Maldonado’s whereabouts, or information on the stolen vehicle, were asked to call Portage Police at (219) 762-3122.

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