GENTRY, Ark. (AP) - A sheriff's department official says there's "no reason tobelieve" an escaped Arizona inmate and his fiancee are in a smallArkansas town.
Law enforcement agencies swarmed Gentry, Ark., after a couplerobbed a beauty salon there Wednesday.
But Benton County Sheriff's Office spokesman Doug Gay saysthere's no reason to think John McCluskey and Casslyn Welchcommitted the crime.
McCluskey and Welch have eluded authorities since he and twoother inmates escaped from an Arizona prison June 30. They werelast seen in Montana.
Gay says the Arkansas salon owner who was robbed saysphotographs of the couple don't match the couple who were in hershop. And he says a relative of one of the fugitives no longerlives in Gentry.
But he says an extensive search is ongoing.
An escaped Arizona prison inmate suspected in two New Mexicomurders has likely darkened his hair and grown a beard, accordingto the U.S. Marshals Service, which has now shifted its search toArkansas.
John Charles McCluskey and his alleged accomplice, fiancéeand cousin, Casslyn Welch, may have dyed her hair blonde as thepair continues to elude pursuing officers.
On Wednesday the Marshals Service release photos of McCluskeyand Welch altered to show them as they may appear now. Welch alsomay be thinner than she appears to be in her driver's licensephoto.
A second escapee, Tracey Province, was captured Monday nearYellowstone National Park in Wyoming. McCluskey and Welch werebelieved to have continued north with the search focused aroundGlacier National Park in Montana and in the neighboring Canadianprovinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan.
However the Marshals Service now reports McCluskey and Welch aresuspected in an armed robbery Wednesday morning in Gentry, Ark.Gentry is in northwest Arkansas nearly 1,600 miles from St. Mary,Mont., where the couple was spotted on Sunday.
Welch's mother also lives near Gentry.
McCluskey, Province and Welch have been linked to the murder ofa vacationing Oklahoma couple whose remains were found in a burnedcamper trailer near Santa Rosa last week, according to New MexicoState Police.
McCluskey, Province and a third inmate captured in Coloradoescaped from a privately operated prison near Kingman, Ariz., onJuly 30. Welch is believed to have thrown wire cutters over theperimeter fence to aid in the escape.
Santa Fe police are working on a new way to put a stop to busy burglars. Instead of throwing them in jail they want to put them rehab.
A winter storm warning has been issued for Albuquerque and surrounding areas through 11 p.m. Thursday.
Tempers flared Wednesday night at the Albuquerque Public Schools Board of Education meeting as the firestorm over teacher evaluations and student testing continues.
An Albuquerque man says an emergency vet clinic turned away his dying dog because he didn't have enough cash in his pocket to pay to save him. The dog later died.
Closing arguments wrapped up Wednesday in the final sentencing phase of John McCluskey's federal murder trial. The same jury that convicted him of killing an Oklahoma couple, must now decide whether McCluskey should face the death penalty.
Today’s top weather and news stories with Elizabeth Alvarez, Matt Mauro and meteorologist Kristen Van Dyke.
* Snow Storm
* Road Conditions
* N.E. Heights Winter Storm
*Weather in the West
* Sheriff Houston
* Toys for Tots
* Winter Weather Coverage
* Board of Education Meeting
* DWI Laws
* Anthony Stanford Sexual Harassment