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Manhunt continues for fugitive from Arizona jail

The search continues for a fugitive who walked out of a Maricopa County jail using another inmate’s identification two weeks ago.

The Arizona Republic reports that Matt Hershey, a deputy U.S. marshal in Arizona, said the U.S. Marshals Service is still collecting information and following up on leads on Rocky Marquez. He offered no specifics on where investigators believe Marquez might be staying, though the Marshals service continues to work with authorities in Mexico.

According to investigators, Marquez, 33, walked out of the sheriff’s Lower Buckeye Jail with a group of other inmates who were being released earlier this month. Officials said Marquez took the identification of another inmate who was scheduled for release, shaved his head and dressed in the other inmate’s civilian clothes.

Surveillance footage shows Marquez calmly waiting with other inmates and walking out the door.

Investigators believe he was picked up after leaving the jail.

“Pretty much the whole squad of our task force has been working it every day since it happened,” Hershey said. “A lot of resources are being used on it.”

Last week, investigators arrested Antonio Melara, 20, and his mother, Carmella Marbury, 43, on suspicion of conspiracy to commit escape.

Marquez was in Lower Buckeye Jail on allegations of perjury, misconduct involving weapons, fraud, forgery and witness tampering. On May 1, a federal grand jury handed up an eight-count indictment with allegations tied to a large-scale marijuana-distribution ring and Marquez’s efforts to conceal the proceeds by purchasing property, including two $400,000 homes.

Marquez’s escape marked the second time in four months that an inmate fled the sheriff’s custody. Jairo Contreras, 20, snuck out of a Maricopa County jail in an oversized laundry cart and was captured about 10 days later in Santa Fe following a car chase and standoff with local law enforcement and the Marshals Service.

The Marshals Service is continuing to work with authorities in Mexico to hunt for Marquez and other fugitives, Hershey said.

“Those are being worked on a daily basis,” he said. “Each case poses a few different challenges that we’re always working through.”

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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