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ODOC searching for Howard McLeod Correctional Center walkaway

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

ATOKA, Okla. -- Oklahoma Department of Corrections agents and security staff are searching for a man who walked away from the minimum-security Howard McLeod Correctional Center Monday night. 

At around 7:50 p.m., HMCC security staff discovered James E. Smith, 39, missing after learning a resident near the 5,300-acre site had called the sheriff's office complaining of someone trespassing on their property. 

Smith was serving several Stephens County sentences for armed robbery, firearms possession and escape after lawful arrest. 

Smith is described as white, about 6-feet tall, weighing about 176 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. He is missing most of his right arm and a finger on his left hand. He has multiple tattoos on his legs, back arms and chest, including a gecko on his left arm, lightning bolts on his right and a shark on his back. 

He is considered armed and dangerous. Anyone with information can call our escapee hotline at 866-363-1119 or email

HMCC is an unfenced minimum-security prison, housing approximately 650 inmates outside Atoka. ODOC's Agri-Services' unit uses much of the facility's land to produce beef cattle, hay, pecans and firewood with paid inmate labor.

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