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Man Found Shot To Death Believed To Be Escapee

August 1, 1988

CLEVELAND (AP) _ A man thought to be a prison escapee apparently shot himself to death while being chased by police Sunday in suburban Cleveland, authorities said.

Police found the body of a man believed to be Michael Cardine inside a pickup truck after the chase ended about 12:30 p.m. Sunday, said Lakewood Police Lt. Dan Clark. The man shot himself in the chest, Clark said.

Cardine, 36, escaped Saturday from the medium-security London Correctional Institute in central Ohio in a prison ambulance after tricking two guards and briefly taking one of them hostage, prison officials said.

Authorities were waiting for a positive identification from the Cuyahoga County coroner’s office sometime Monday, Clark said. Cardine’s fingerprint records were delivered to the coroner’s office Sunday to aid in the identification.

Circumstances of the shooting indicate that the body was that of Cardine, said Superintendent Arnold Jago at the prison about 155 miles from Cleveland.

The pickup truck involved in the chase had been stolen in Marysville, about 25 miles from the prison, on Saturday night, about the same time the prison ambulance used in the escape was found there, Clark said. Cardine was from Marysville and several weapons were found in the pickup truck, Clark said.

Police in suburban Rocky River spotted the truck and chased it into neighboring Lakewood, Clark said. The truck went out of control during the chase and ended up in a yard, he said.

Clark said the man had shot himself by the time police surrounded the truck, but police were not sure when the shooting took place. No shots were fired by police, he said.

Cardine was armed with a 9mm rifle with 15 rounds of ammunition and a .38- caliber handgun with six rounds of ammunition when he escaped at 6:45 p.m. Saturday, officials said.

Cardine, an inmate at London since 1979, was serving a 22-to-70-year sentence on kidnapping, armed robbery and drug possession convictions in Franklin, Cuyahoga and Richland counties, Jago said.

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