NEW AUGUSTA, Miss. — A convicted murderer who was to stand trial Monday for a 1995 stabbing death escaped from jail with his cellmate after they used a hacksaw blade to cut through an air-conditioning duct, officials said.
Authorities searched Sunday for Kenneth Moody, 26, and cellmate Scotty Thomas, 33, but they remained at large.
Perry County Sheriff Carlos Herring said they somehow obtained a hacksaw blade to cut through the duct. He said they climbed through the duct and onto the jail roof before jumping to the ground.
No vehicles were missing at the jail, and it was possible someone had been waiting in a car for the two men, he said. The escape occurred late Saturday.
"It appeared to be pretty well planned and, while we are searching this area, it is possible they are trying to get out of the country," Herring said.
Authorities said both men were considered extremely dangerous.
Moody was convicted in April of two counts of capital murder and sentenced to life without parole for killing Hattiesburg residents Robbie Bond, 21, and William Hatcher, 27, in May 1995.
He was to stand trial Monday for a May 1995 stabbing death of Michael Lee, 31, of Mobile, Ala.
Perry County Sheriff Carlos Herring said Thomas had been held at the jail for several months awaiting trial in a separate case involving his uncle's slaying.