Held at large after escaping from Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport, authorities say


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An inmate sent back to Wisconsin to face drug charges escaped a transportation officer at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport on Tuesday after the officer turned away to deliver food to the inmate, reports said. authorities.

Tyler James Martinez, 31, was being extradited from Los Angeles to the Brown County Jail in Wisconsin when he escaped from an employee of REDI Transports, a service contracted to the Brown County Sheriff’s Office.

Martinez escaped the REDI Transports employee at around 1:10 p.m. while in O’Hare’s lobby waiting for a connecting flight to Wisconsin’s Appleton International Airport, the Green Bay Press reported- Gazette.

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Tyler James Martinez, 31, remains at large after escaping police custody at Chicago O’Hare International Airport on Tuesday
(Brown County Sheriff’s Office)

Martinez had a number of extraditable arrest warrants from Brown County, which included jumping bail, possession of cocaine, methamphetamine, narcotics, stolen car, failure to appear in court and criminal damage to the property, the sheriff’s office said.

Martinez was also wanted for questioning regarding multiple burglaries, FOX 32 Chicago reported.

REDI Transports had been ordered to break Martinez out of Los Angeles County Jail – where he had previously been arrested – and bring him to Brown County Jail. The officer and Martinez flew from Los Angeles to Chicago and were awaiting the connecting flight.

A manhunt is underway to find Martinez, who got away while the employee bought food for the inmate, according to the Green Bay Press-Gazette.

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United Airlines employees stand in Terminal 1 at O'Hare International Airport on Oct. 1, 2020 in Chicago.  (E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

United Airlines employees stand in Terminal 1 at O’Hare International Airport on Oct. 1, 2020 in Chicago. (E. Jason Wambsgans/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

After the escape, a Chicago police review of airport surveillance footage determined that Martinez released at least one of his handcuffed hands before leaving the terminal. He was last seen aboard a rental car shuttle, according to the footage.

Martinez was last seen wearing a gray sweatshirt, gray or black sweatpants and dark laceless tennis shoes, authorities said.

Brown County Jail

Brown County Jail
(Brown County Sheriff’s Office)

After the incident, the sheriff’s office suspended the use of REDI Transports for nationwide extraditions, pending the results of an investigation. REDI Transports, formerly Wisconsin Lock and Load, has been transporting prisoners for Brown County since 2007.

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The county does not pay the contractor until the inmate is delivered to jail, according to the Press-Gazette.


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