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Escaped Missouri inmate steals police car from Oklahoma officers trying to recapture him

Police arrested the inmate after a woman reported that he kidnapped her but later discovered that she was an alleged accomplice in his escape from jail.

An inmate who escaped from a Missouri jail on Saturday managed to slip out of police custody in Oklahoma days later where he stole a police vehicle after officers attempted to recapture him.

Police arrested Travis Lee Davis, 30, in a parking lot in Heavener, Okla., on Wednesday after a woman reported that he had kidnapped her.

Davis, who escaped from Pettis County Jail in Missouri on Saturday, was handcuffed in the back of a police vehicle while authorities interviewed the woman, Christole Hurst, 23, outside the Choctaw Travel Plaza.

The inmate then managed to get into the driver's seat through a narrow opening in the barrier between the car's front and back seats and drove off, LeFlore County Sheriff Rob Seale said.

"It's not an easy thing to do," Seale told NBC News on Thursday. "I mean, we've rarely seen it before because the window in the prisoner cage is pretty small but he is a really skinny guy so he could fit."

Heavener Police Department said Davis wrecked the vehicle a few miles away and ran off on foot. Police believe he may have hopped on a nearby train.

Authorities are now also searching for Hurst after they discovered that she was an alleged accomplice in Davis' escape from the Missouri jail.

Image: Travis Lee Davis
Travis Lee Davis.Missouri State Highway Patrol

Davis — who is considered dangerous by authorities — was being held on $110,000 bond for various charges, including endangering the welfare of a child, domestic assault, resisting arrest and parole violation stemming from a Feb. 13 domestic incident, according to Pettis County court documents.

Seale said Hurst will be facing pending charges in Missouri for an accessory to an escape as well as charges in Oklahoma for aiding and abetting a fugitive.

"We’re thinking she may still be around this area somewhere and attempting to pick him back up," he said.

Police describe Davis as a white male, who is 6 feet tall and weighs 150 pounds with brown hair and blue eyes. Seale said he is very "identifiable" because he has several tattoos, including an eye inside a triangle on the front of his neck.

LeFlore County Sheriff's Office is asking if anyone with information on the escape or the suspect's whereabouts to contact local law enforcement agency immediately.