Inmate mistakenly released from Phoenix jail - New York News

Inmate mistakenly released from Phoenix jail

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PHOENIX -

An inmate considered armed and dangerous escaped from a Maricopa County jail by simply walking out.

He pulled it off by switching identities with another inmate who was due to be released.

It happened at the Lower Buckeye Jail.

Rocky Marquez, 33, fooled detention officers and walked to freedom. He was incarcerated for misconduct involving weapons, perjury, forgery, witness tampering and more.

"The inmate assumed identity of another inmate. They conspired with each other, we have a situation where inmate is out that shouldn't be," says MCSO Capt. Brian Lee.

The sheriff's office says there is a system of checks in the jail to make sure the right inmates are released, but somehow Marquez beat it.

"This is a rare occurrence, it does happen from time to time. In a rare situation there is sometimes human error."

Capt. Lee adds there are up to 200 releases a day.

The sheriff's office is hoping to buy some biometric scanning equipment that would make it very easy to verify the identity of any inmate. But so far, for budget reasons, that has not happened.

The sheriff's office is now searching for Rocky Marquez. They consider him armed and dangerous.

The inmate who switched identities with Marquez will face conspiracy charges.

He's facing additional charges of conspiracy and escape once he's captured.

Anyone who may see Marquez or has any information is asked to call 911.

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