2 fugitives from Duluth prison camp kept low profile before arrestTwo convicted con artists who fled a minimum-security prison camp in Duluth last week drew little attention in Burnsville, a town 175 miles away where they tried to remain inconspicuous until a tip led investigators to the hotel where they were hiding out.
By: Associated Press, Associated Press
BURNSVILLE, Minn. — Two convicted con artists who fled a minimum-
security prison camp in Duluth last week drew little attention in Burnsville, a town 175 miles away where they tried to remain inconspicuous until a tip led investigators to the hotel where they were hiding out.
Michael Krzyzaniak, 64, and Gerald Greenfield, 67, were arrested early Friday morning at a Hampton Inn. Afterward, several locals said they didn’t recall seeing the two men in public at any point.
“When I saw their
pictures in the paper after they were caught, nothing clicked,” said Bryan Prettyman, who owns Ernie’s Pub & Grille next to the hotel.
Employees at a neighboring convenience store and fast-food restaurant also said they didn’t recognize the men, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reported.
The two men were discovered missing from a low-security prison camp in Duluth on March 30.
Krzyzaniak was serving a 12-year sentence for bilking investors out of nearly $26 million. Greenfield was serving four years for conspiracy to commit money laundering in a $2.5 million mortgage-fraud scheme.
The U.S. Marshals Service said it was led to their hotel by a tip. The two men were arrested without incident.
Laura Bourdon of TMI Hospitality, which owns and operates the hotel, said the fugitives provided a credit card number but paid for their single room every day with cash. She said they’d been staying at the hotel since Sunday and registered under aliases.
Both men were “quiet and not drawing attention to themselves” in Burnsville, Bourdon said.
In the pre-dawn hours Friday, authorities knocked on the doors of a few rooms, awakening guests until they found the fugitives, she said.
“Law enforcement didn’t feel that an evacuation was needed,” Bourdon said. The suspects “were not considered dangerous. They were not armed.”
Angela Ellis, a hotel guest from Orange, Calif., said she was awakened by loud banging and voices. The only phrase she could make out was, “Put your hands up,” she said.
Greenfield was scheduled to be released in November 2015, and Krzyzaniak’s sentence runs until April 2022. Both men face the prospect of additional incarceration.