Hunt on for armed robber after latest prison escape

TWO inmates at a South Yorkshire open prison have become the third set of violent offenders in as many weeks to go on the run from jails around the country.

Damien Burns, 39, from Scarborough and Dean Jackson, 27, from Newcastle-upon-Tyne, have absconded from HMP Hatfield

Damien Burns, 39, an armed robber from Scarborough, and Dean Jackson, 27, from Newcastle-upon-Tyne, absconded from the category D Hatfield Prison.

Responding to the latest escape, Justice Secretary Chris Grayling announced yesterday that prisoners will no longer be transferred to open sites or allowed out on temporary release if they have absconded before.

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Burns was sentenced in 2007 and was serving an indeterminate sentence for a knifepoint robbery and Jackson was on remand awaiting a sentence for a theft-related matter, according to South Yorkshire Police.

The force said they “may be attempting to make their way back to the areas they originate from as they do not have any known connections” in South Yorkshire.

Their escape on Monday comes a day after a murderer who stabbed a blind man to death was arrested after going on the run from prison. Arnold Pickering, 44, who was jailed for life in 1991 for killing a man he wrongly thought to be a paedophile, failed to return to HMP Kennet in Merseyside after leaving the Category C jail on day release on Saturday.

Another inmate, Thomas Moffett, 51, serving an indeterminate sentence for a number of robberies, also failed to return from day release on Saturday but was arrested last night for being unlawfully at large.

Two weeks ago notorious armed robber Michael Wheatley - known as Skullcracker - absconded from Standford Hill open prison on the Isle of Sheppey, Kent, while on temporary release.