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Breaking News

Texas Fugitives Surrender

Aired January 24, 2001 - 6:15 a.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

JASON CARROLL, CNN ANCHOR: As you may have heard, at the top of our hour, those two men -- those two last Texas escapees have, in fact, given themselves up.

And we've got a reporter out there who's going to give us an update.

LINDA STOUFFER, CNN ANCHOR: That's right. We have the first opportunity to take you live to someone right there on the scene. Frank Buckley has been following the situation overnight.

Frank, hello. What can you tell us from there?

FRANK BUCKLEY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, just a remarkable end to this search for the final two fugitives here. They finally gave themselves up after being discovered very late last night and entering into a negotiation with negotiators from the police department here in Colorado Springs.

They were found in a room at the Holiday Inn, which is very close to the location where, you might recall yesterday, the van they had been using, according to police, was found.

And then, methodically, the police had been in this neighborhood around that van, going room to room through the various motels. This is one of those kinds of areas where there are the Holiday Inns, Days Inns, kinds of motels and little restaurants right off of Interstate 25. And methodically went through this neighborhood, and were going door to door to find out if these two men were still here.

In fact, they were. They were discovered based on a tip sometime around 10 o'clock last night local time. The police were called to the scene, and began a negotiation over the phone. At some point during that negotiation, the fugitives inside the hotel room asked to speak to a television reporter to do an interview live.

Police asked various broadcast companies not to broadcast it live. But I can tell you that I watched the entire situation unfold live on television. The local anchorman interviewing one over the phone, that phone transmission broadcast live, then the next one getting on, talking to him live. And then the reporter gently prodding them to honor their commitment, as he put it, to step outside of that hotel -- motel room. And then that's exactly what they did. One stepped out. At first, they took off their shirts according to the agreement. Police probably suggesting they do that, to make sure that they didn't have any concealed weapons on them. First, one stepped out. That was reported live. Then, another stepped out. That was reported live. And shortly thereafter, they both appeared outside here with their shirts off in the cold, were led to police cars and have been led away from the scene.

So a remarkable end to the search for the final two fugitives.

STOUFFER: And Frank, quick question for you: Have investigators been able to piece together where these two men have been in the last few days? In other words, do they believe they were still with the other five men in Woodland Park up until Monday when police closed in there?

BUCKLEY: Well, the last and best information regarding that is that the two men were with the other five fugitives in Woodland Park as of Sunday -- at some point Sunday. We don't know exactly when.

And then if you trace it backward from there, they were at this Woodland Park RV park for approximately three weeks. Police believe they arrived there on January 1st and somehow blended in. You might have -- if you've heard the tape, you heard Patrick Murphy saying that the fugitives joked among themselves, during the past several weeks, about the fact that they had dyed their hair and were changing their appearance.

They somehow blended in. One of the fugitives, in fact, blended in to the point of attending bible study classes in Woodland Park, once they settled into this RV park. Seven men were living together in this -- in a mobile home or an RV -- a recreational vehicle.

Before that, we also heard Murphy confirm during this interview that they had gone -- their first stop was Pueblo, Colorado. And they went there, he said, and they chose Colorado at random, he said. They drove up from Texas after their breakout. They got caught in a terrible snowstorm and drove for hours. And he said, we chose Colorado at random. And they came here to Colorado, first to Pueblo, then at some point moved up to Woodland Park. And they just wanted to blend in.

STOUFFER: Frank Buckley, we hope that you'll stick with us right there.

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