Regional
12:18 pm
Sun January 30, 2011

Arizona Escapee Sent To New Mexico On Murder Charges

New Mexico – An inmate who escaped an Arizona prison last summer and went on a crime spree was taken to New Mexico on Saturday to face capital murder charges, the U.S. Marshals Service said.

Tracy Province, 42, was flown from Kingman, Ariz., to Albuquerque. He was sentenced in Kingman on Friday to more than 38 years in prison on charges of escape, kidnapping, armed robbery, aggravated assault and weapons misconduct stemming from crimes in Arizona after his escape.

The sentencing cleared the way for him to be sent to New Mexico to face the murder charges in the deaths of Gary and Linda Haas of Tecumseh, Okla.

Authorities say Province, John McCluskey and Daniel Renwick escaped from a medium-security prison in Kingman on July 30. Authorities say McCluskey's fianc e and cousin, Casslyn Welch, helped the men by throwing cutting tools over the prison's perimeter fence, allowing them to flee into the desert.

The escape sparked a nationwide hunt, and all four were recaptured within three weeks.

Province, McCluskey and Welch all face capital murder and carjacking charges stemming from the Haas' killings.

New Mexico prosecutors have said Province, McCluskey and Welch targeted the Haases at an Interstate 40 rest stop because they had grown weary of traveling and sleeping in their car and wanted the couple's camping trailer. Authorities said the Haases were taken to a remote ranch near Colonias, N.M., where they were shot and the trailer was set on fire.

The Haases, both 61, were traveling to Pagosa Springs, Colo., for a camping trip.

Province's first court hearing in Albuquerque on the murder and carjacking charges is on Wednesday.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.