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Escaped Cuyahoga Co. convicted murderer captured

Posted at 5:37 AM, Mar 28, 2016

A convicted murderer who escaped from an Ohio prison was captured late Monday by a joint law enforcement task force, authorities said.

The Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction tweeted around 11:30 p.m. that John Modie, an inmate serving time for the murder of a woman at his home, had been captured in Nelsonville 40 minutes earlier.

Modie was reported missing during a Sunday night prisoner count at the Hocking Unit of the Southeastern Correctional Complex in Nelsonville, state prison officials said. Authorities said Monday that a thorough search of the prison confirmed Modie, 58, had escaped.

The Pike County sheriff issued a bulletin that said Modie should be considered armed and dangerous. The bulletin said he could be in a gold-colored Jeep Grand Cherokee with two women and might have cuts from razor wire.

Hocking College, about 2 miles from the prison, closed its campuses Monday as a result of his escape. It urged those on campus to remain indoors and report any suspicious activity to college police. The campuses will reopen on Tuesday.

Modie was serving 18 years to life for convictions on murder, robbery and escape charges.

According to the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor's Office, Modie pleaded guilty on Dec. 8, 2003 to the murder of 26-year-old Ucianna Ortiz. Ortiz's body was found on Junction Road just after midnight on Oct. 16, 2002. She had last been scene two days before. The medical examiner ruled cause of death as blunt force trauma to the head. Investigators said Modie killed her at his Cleveland home and then dumped her body near Interstate 90.

He was arrested in Texas on Oct. 27 driving a BMW stolen in Cuyahoga County.