He Bought Bus Ticket, Then Was Recaptured

Police picked up Porfirio Duarte-Herrera days after he went missing from Nevada jail
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 28, 2022 12:30 AM CDT
Updated Sep 29, 2022 9:08 AM CDT
Casino Bomber Escapes Nevada Prison
This undated photo provided by the Nevada Department of Corrections shows Porfirio Duarte-Herrera, a convicted bombmaker who was discovered missing Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2022, from Southern Desert Correctional Center outside Las Vegas.   (Nevada Department of Corrections via AP)

Update: It was a quick flirtation with freedom for Porfirio Duarte-Herrera, but that liberation has now come to an end. After being discovered missing Tuesday from Nevada's Southern Desert Correctional Center, a manhunt was launched for the 42-year-old, who was serving a life sentence for a fatal 2007 bombing at Las Vegas' Luxor Hotel and Casino. NBC News reports that Duarte-Herrera was taken back into custody in Las Vegas on Wednesday "without incident" by officers from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, per a department tweet. "He was en route to Mexico via a bus," Nevada US Marshal Gary Schofield tells the Las Vegas Review-Journal, noting Duarte-Herrera had already purchased his bus ticket. An eagle-eyed employee at the bus station is said to have spotted Duarte-Herrera and alerted authorities. Our original story from Tuesday follows:

Porfirio Duarte-Herrera, who was serving a life sentence for a fatal 2007 bombing at the Luxor Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, has escaped from a Nevada prison. Duarte-Herrera, who planted a bomb in the parking garage that killed an employee of the casino's hot dog stand, was missing when Southern Desert Correctional Center officials undertook the 7am prisoner count Tuesday, the Reno Gazette Journal reports. Escape procedures at the Indian Springs facility, north of Vegas, were initiated by 8am and the search is ongoing. Gov. Steve Sisolak later said in a statement that he'd learned Duarte-Herrera had actually been missing since the weekend, and prison officials later confirmed he'd been missing since around Friday night, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports.

"This kind of security lapse cannot be permitted and those responsible will be held accountable," Sisolak said. Omar Rueda-Denvers, Duarte-Herrera's friend and accomplice, was also sentenced to life in the bombing, which prosecutors said was a targeted attack on the victim, Willebaldo Dorantes Antonio, who was dating Rueda-Denvers' ex-girlfriend. A pipe bomb atop Antonio's car killed the 27-year-old when he unwittingly picked it up at the end of his shift. Fears of a terrorist attack were briefly sparked, but investigators soon determined it was an isolated incident. (More escaped criminal stories.)

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