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Escaped prisoner was serving manslaughter sentence

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Posted: Jan 1, 2013 11:45 AM by Russell Jones
Updated: Jan 1, 2013 11:45 AM
Source: WBRZ

  Rating: 4.0 (3 votes)

Topics: st. gabriel, state, prison, escape, keana barnes, fugitive, reward, LCIW, DOC, manslaughter

ST. GABRIEL - Authorities said the woman who escaped overnight from a state prison in St. Gabriel was serving a 25-year sentence for manslaughter, and offered a reward for information leading to her capture.

St. Gabriel Police Chief Kevin Ambeau said 33-year-old Keana Barnes climbed over a fence at the Louisiana Correctional Institute for Women escape early Tuesday morning. Ambeau said Barnes may have hurt herself on the fence, since blood was found at the scene. Investigators also found a discarded jacket near the prison.

According to the Department of Corrections, Barnes is from the New Orleans area and came into their custody in 2004. She's described as 5'4" tall and weighs 140 pounds, with dark brown eyes and brown hair, though the prison said she shaved her head last week.

State prison officials said Barnes should be considered armed and dangerous, and offered a $1,000 reward for information leading to her capture. Tips on Barnes' location can be called in to the LCIW Control Center at (225) 319-2300.

It's the second escape in less than a week from the state prison campus in St. Gabriel. Authorities re-captured Josh Kelly on Dec. 28 after he escaped from the Elayn Hunt Correctional Center next door to LCIW. Prison officials said he overpowered an EMT and drove the campus in their ambulance. He was caught later that day in Ascension Parish.

News 2's Rob Krieger will have more on the search for Barnes tonight starting at 4 p.m.

IMAGE: La. Dept. of Public Safety and Corrections

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