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Sheriff: Santa Cruz Inmate Faked Injury To Escape

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Santa Cruz Manhunt

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SANTA CRUZ (CBS 5 / AP) — A Santa Cruz County inmate who beat a sheriff’s deputy and stole her gun likely faked a shoulder injury as part of his escape plan, authorities said Wednesday.

Santa Cruz County Sheriff Phil Wowak said he believed 24-year-old Maurice Ainsworth knew he would be unshackled during an MRI exam, since nothing metal is allowed in the scanner.

Wowak said that as Deputy Cathy Bramanti tried to re-shackle Ainsworth after the Monday morning exam, he elbowed her in the head repeatedly and bit her index finger.

Bramanti chased him as he fled the hospital, but he stole her Taser stun gun and handgun as they fought, said Wowak.

The Santa Cruz Sentinel newspaper reported Ainsworth has been held in an undisclosed medical facility after possibly ingesting pills before being recaptured Monday afternoon.

(© 2010 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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