Police Say Fugitive Was Left Alone When He Escaped - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Police Say Fugitive Was Left Alone When He Escaped

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BOZEMAN -

Law enforcement agencies across the state continue to search for the sex offender who escaped from the Gallatin County Law and Justice center Saturday morning.

Police say Kevin Briggs, 28 was not being watched when he got away.

At approximately 5:15 a.m. on Saturday, Bozeman Police responded to a call of a woman who had been sexually assaulted near Montana State University's campus.

"At approximately 5:40 we located and arrested Mr. Briggs," said Rich McLane, Bozeman Deputy Chief of Police. "He was brought to the Law and Justice for continuing aspects of the investigation."

That man being questioned was Kevin Briggs, 28. After assaulting an officer and resisting arrest, Briggs was brought to the Bozeman Police Department and placed in an interview room, waiting to talk to a detective.

"These are not locked down rooms, but they are within our police area. You could walk out one door, push another door be in the lobby and push another door and be on the street," said McLane.

McLane said Briggs escaped sometime in the 10 minutes he was left unattended.
Officers discovered he was gone at about 8:05 a.m.

"He was not being directly watched. The officers knew he was dangerous. They knew he had just assaulted someone. They knew he was an escape risk," said McLane. "There was communication gap between one officer and another officer and somewhere one thought one was watching him and the other thought he was watching him."

Briggs escaped in a belly belt with his hands cuffed and shackles on his legs. Officers were able to track Briggs foot steps for sometime, but then it became more difficult as the day went on.

Because of this overlook, McLane said the department is doing an internal review.

"We owe it to the community to make sure we take an error such as this seriously," said McLane. "We will do a comprehensive review of this incident and make the necessary changes."

A $500,000 warrant has been issued on Briggs. He is being charged with aggravated assault, attempted sexual intercourse without consent, assault of a peace officer and escape, all felonies.

Briggs is a registered sex offender. He escaped custody twice before in Lewis and Clark County and Powell County.

Previously, he was charged with sexual intercourse without consent, burglary and kidnapping.

If you have information on Briggs whereabouts, you are asked to call Bozeman Police at 582-2000.

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