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Seven South Texas Prison Escapees Still on Loose, Wanted For Killing Cop on Christmas Eve

Aired December 27, 2000 - 1:12 p.m. ET

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

DARYN KAGAN, CNN ANCHOR: Speaking of "Most Wanted," over here at the CNN computer I'm able to check on the latest from the Texas state wires about those seven maximum security prisoners who escaped some two weeks ago. Apparently, according to officials, they are still on the loose, no hot trail on them. And apparently officials believe they are still together, these seven convicted prisoners still on the loose. What surprises the experts: that most groups, prison escapees, break up as soon as they get out. But as I said, they think that these seven men are still together. In this case, all seven men -- convicted of murders, rapes and robberies -- are wanted in the Christmas Eve killing of a police officer at a sporting goods store about 300 miles away from the prison where they broke out.

We're going to get an update now from Brett Shipp from our affiliate WFAA in Dallas.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

BRETT SHIPP, WFAA REPORTER (voice-over): They are in search of seven suspects, all confirmed escapees from a South Texas prison two weeks ago, all now positively identified by store employees as having taken some part in the store robbery Sunday. They are now as well considered to have played a role in the shooting death of Irving police officer Aubrey Hawkins.

DAVID TULL, IRVING, TEXAS POLICE: That's what makes this, again, so horrendous. You've got identified as the people that escaped from prison on the 13th. They're still banded together. They've pulled off an organized planned robbery that resulted in the death of our officer.

SHIPP: In front of the store, a makeshift floral memorial honors the fallen officer. Out back where he was shot, this wreath. The sporting goods store itself closed until next Tuesday, owners foregoing the possibility of precious post-Christmas sales all in reverence of the disturbing events.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

KAGAN: And officials believe that the men stole more guns and ammunition during that robbery. Also, on their way out of prison, they stole about 14 pistols, a loaded shotgun, a loaded rifle and 238 rounds of ammunition. Goes without saying these men are armed and dangerous.

TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com

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