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Missing Northwest Indiana prison inmate found hiding on grounds

Orville Morris, who was thought to have escaped from the Westville Correctional Facility, was found hiding on a ledge along the building's ceiling. | Indiana Dept. of Correction

An inmate who was thought to have escaped Friday from a Northwest Indiana correctional facility was found hiding on the prison’s grounds.

Orville Morris | Indiana Dept. of Correction
Orville Morris | Indiana Dept. of Correction

Orville Morris, 35, was unaccounted for during a facility count at the Westville Correctional Center at 3:15 p.m. Friday, according to the LaPorte County sheriff’s office and Indiana Department of Correction. He was thought to have escaped.

Morris was found hiding inside the pallet shop where he worked, according to a statement posted on the Dept. of Correction’s Facebook page about noon Sunday. He had crawled up into the some of the mechanical systems in the ceiling.

When staff returned to the building to check it again, they heard a noise, according to the statement. They isolated the area and found Morris hiding on a ledge along the building’s industrial HVAC ductwork.

When he was found, Morris yelled, “I give up. I give up,” according to the statement.

Morris is being questioned by the facility’s correctional police and will be placed in an extremely high security restrictive housing unit, according to the statement. He will be charged internally for the attempted escape, and the La Porte County prosecutor will decide if felony charges will be filed.

“We never give up. Our teams went through the entire facility three times searching for him. We would keep on searching until he was found,” Superintendent Mark Sevier said in the statement.

Morris was serving a three-year sentence on felony robbery charges out of Washington County, and is about to begin another three-year sentence on felony burglary charges out of Harrison County, authorities said. His earliest release date is January 2019.