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Police manhunt continues after escapees spotted at rest area

The search had schools on lockdown, helicopters flying over-head, and police searching trains, but Monday night the search continued for two Blackburn escapees.

Anthony Kendrick and Jerry Nation escaped from Blackburn Correctional Complex Sunday morning. That led to a large search in Fayette County, and then, the two were spotted in Scott County.

Police spotted the men at an I-75 rest area in Scott County after getting a tip. The two escapees took off into a nearby field prompting a massive search.

The manhunt began to focus on northern Scott County around noon after Jimmy Dailey told police about a strange encounter he had at the southbound rest stop where he works off I-75 near mile marker 126. Dailey says one of the inmates approached him and asked to use his cell phone. "I said, I ain't got much minutes on it," Dailey recalled, "Then he bummed a cigarette off of me, and then I gave him a light, and he said their truck broke down, down the road here and they was trying to get back to Frankfort and everything."

That exchange led investigators to cover a wide area. The hunt forced two area schools to go into lockdown. Jane Woodie was picking up her son from Royal Spring Middle School when she learned about the added security measures. "Oh, it definitely concerns me," Woodie said, "but if they're on lockdown, I'm assuming they're doing all they can do to keep them safe."

Teams from at least five different agencies became hopeful when a witness spotted the men inside a moving boxcar traveling north along railroad tracks near the rest stop, but a search of the train came up empty. "We've exhausted our efforts here," Kentucky State Police Sgt. Derran Broyles said, "It is difficult terrain to try to locate somebody. If they want to hide in a culvert or a creek, certainly it would be easy to do."

As the teams regrouped, police reminded the public to be cautious as long as the inmates remain free. "As time wears on, I believe that they would become a little bit more desperate as to the means that they're going to try to get out of the area," Broyles said, "If I lived in the area, I would certainly want to keep my doors locked and my eyes open."

Police say they will continue to monitor the area with additional patrols as they expect the escapees to use the cover of darkness to make their move.

If you have any information on these escapees, Kentucky State Police ask that you call them at the Frankfort post. That number is 502-227-2221. You can also call 911.

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