Former Spring Hill inmate: ‘I feel sorry for the local community’

Springhill Prison PNL-140403-161105001
Springhill Prison PNL-140403-161105001

A former HMP Spring Hill inmate has said he feels sorry for people living close to the jail because it is too easy for prisoners to abscond.

Alan Clark, 59, who served time for drugs possession last year, believes that what he says are unfair day release rules lead to inmates walking from the category D open prison without permission.

He said: “I feel sorry for the people who live in that area, because people are just walking out.

“The offender management unit works on an ‘if your face fits’ system, it’s a broken system. So people get frustrated and just walk out.”

Mr Clark, who has been inseveral prisons, claimed other jails have better day-release controls and policies which helped ensure only those trusted to leave the site did so.

Mr Clark’s comments come as police launched a search for Daniel Rutter, 43, who walked out of the jail last week.

Members of the public have been advised not to approach Mr Rutter directly if they spot him, and to call the police straight away.

Last week James Boyce, 41, who absconded from the prison to spend Christmas at home was given extra days on his sentence and an £80 fine by a judge.

Last year ‘dangerous kidnapper’ John Rooney hitched a lift from the prison to Bicester sparking a manhunt.

And in 2014 Darren Douglas, 46, who was serving a life sentence for a murder and Ricardo Dunn, 32, who was serving an assault sentence absconded together.

In 2013 Ian John McLoughlin, 55, a convicted murderer killed Graham Buck, 66 when he went to the aid of his neighbour in Little Gaddesden. McLoughlin was on day release from a sentence at Spring Hill.

A spokesman for the Prison Service, said: “Absconds from open prisons have fallen to a record low, down 75 per cent on a decade ago.

“At HMP Spring Hill they have more than halved over the same period.”