Abraxas escapee, 16, captured in Clarion County after chase

A juvenile who escaped Monday from the Abraxas youth detention facility near Marienville was captured a few hours later after he stole a truck and fled from police in Clarion County.

Clarion Borough police Chief Bill Peck said the 16-year-old boy from Lackawanna County escaped from Abraxas staff at about 1:30 p.m. while he was going to a doctor appointment in Clarion Borough.

Peck said police had trouble finding the teen as he removed the top layer of his clothing and had a separate outfit on underneath.

“He looked totally different from what we were told,” Peck said.

The chief said he expected the boy would commit another crime to escape the area, and a warning was announced by Peck for borough residents to lock their doors as police searched the area.

“I really just believed he was going to try and find a car and that’s exactly what he did,” Peck said.

Peck said the juvenile stole a truck that was running unattended near 624 Liberty St. and the VFW as the owner was doing errands.

Peck said the teen was spotted at 4:06 p.m. and fled from police in the stolen truck for about six miles. The police chase concluded when the boy crashed at the intersection of Rehobeth Church and Pioneer roads in Clarion Township, Peck said.

The boy wasn’t injured in the low-speed crash, according to Peck. He was taken into custody and placed back in the care of Abraxas staff, Peck said.

Peck said the teen is facing a felony count for theft of the truck, a felony count for theft because the vehicle owner’s gun was in the truck, a felony count of receiving stolen property and two felony counts of escape and fleeing and eluding.

He is also facing a misdemeanor count of accidents involving damage to an attended property for clipping a vehicle at the intersection of Arnold Avenue and East Main Street and a misdemeanor count of recklessly endangering another person because he almost hit a sheriff’s deputy, Peck said.

The boy is also facing several summary driving offenses.

Peck thanked Clarion state police, the Clarion County sheriff’s department, Clarion University police and the Clarion County probation department for their assistance.

“They hung in there with us for hours and their cooperation is very appreciated,” Peck said.

The chief said the crashed vehicle was damaged but was driveable and was returned to its owner.