At this time law enforcement officials are searching for a convicted rapist who escaped Arkansas prison reportedly on jet ski with the help of his mother and sister who police are calling “persons of interest.” According to the Arkansas Department of Corrections (DOC) alert system, 38-year-old Samuel Hartman escaped from Brickeys Prison in east Arkansas on Friday, August 12.  FOX13 News reported that Hartman may have crossed the Mississippi River and is believed to be in the Tunica County area, according to the Tunica County Sheriff’s Office (TCSO).

Sometime overnight, TSCO, the DeSoto County Sheriff’s Office SWAT Team and the US Marshals office executed a search warrant in the 1800 block of Carp Drive, officials said. Evidence was found that Hartman and the alleged persons of interest were planning to stay at the trailer but weren’t currently there.  Hartman is 5’9″ tall, weighs 230 pounds and has several tattoos. His tattoos are a rose, heart, sword, “Forever & Always” and “Sam-N-Christine.”

According to a release from the Arkansas Department of Corrections, Hartman escaped from his field maintenance crew assignment and is considered to be armed and dangerous. During a chase, Hartman and a suspected accomplice reportedly fired at correctional officers. A few hours after announcing Hartman’s escape, DOC released the identities of two women who may have helped him, his sister Misty Hartman and his mother, Linda Annette White, who officials say could also be armed and vicious. There could be at least one more suspect in connection to his escape, according to the officials. 

Hartman may be traveling in a white 2021 Chevy Z71 Trail Boss with Arkansas plates 398 ZVY or no plates at all, according to the Tunica County Sheriff’s Office. The sheriff’s office asked everybody to be on the lookout for a vehicle matching that description. Law enforcement is searching the Tunica County, Mississippi area, after an abandoned vehicle was found on the Arkansas side of the river. Arkansas State Police said a farmer reported seeing abandoned jet skis on a boat ramp near Moon Landing Park, about 2.5 miles away from where they found the abandoned vehicle in Arkansas. A cellphone and set of keys were found on the jet skis and have been taken into evidence. 

The sheriff’s office says when the call came in around 8:20 am, area schools went into lockdown as a safety precaution. Officers were at all of the school campuses to make sure kids got home safely.

In 2013, Hartman was sentenced to life in prison for multiple rape charges in Franklin County. He was convicted of rape at the age of 26 in Franklin County and took a plea deal on November 27, 2013. Hartman has since appealed his conviction to the state’s Supreme Court but was denied. His last known address is on Persimmon Point Road in Magazine, Arkansas.

Original Article