Authorities seek inmate who deserted Soledad fire camp

Authorities seek inmate who deserted Soledad fire camp

3 November 2009

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USA — An inmate who is believed to have walked away from the Gabilan Conservation Fire Camp in Soledad is being sought.

Phillip Anthony Lopez, 41, disappeared after a head count about 1a.m. Monday, Lt. Peter Spoto said.

Lopez is considered a low level offender and may be wearing a gray sweatshirt and matching sweatpants, Spoto said. He is about 5 feet 10 inches tall and weighs about 200 pounds. He has a bald head, thick mustache and several tattoos on his right forearm, head and neck.

Spoto said anyone who sees Lopez should call 911.

Lopez was serving time at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation facility for the manufacture, sale and possession of weapons, and possession of a controlled substance, Spoto said. He could have been released on parole in less than a year.

Officials are investigating his desertion.

“I don’t know what the reason for it was,” Spoto said. “He seemed to do well in camp. ”

Gabilan Fire Camp is a minimal security facility where nonviolent offenders are placed on wildland fire fighting crews.

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