Police Alert: Convicted Australian Child Rapist on the Run in Victoria
By Esther Tanquintic-Misa | July 7, 2014 3:52 PM EST
Police authorities in Victoria have cautioned residents in the area to be on high alert and keep an eye on their children after convicted Australian child rapist Andrew Darling managed to break out of a correctional facility in Ararat.
Members of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police Musical Ride demonstrate their lances during their show on day 3 of the Calgary Stampede rodeo in Calgary, Alberta, July 6, 2014. REUTERS/Todd Korol (CANADA - Tags: SPORT ANIMALS SOCIETY)
Darling had been missing for several hours before the police issued the warning to the public.
Darling, who raped a 13-year-old girl, had cut his electronic surveillance bracelet shortly after 2.30am on Sunday at the Corella Place facility in Ararat, Victoria before walking off the premises. Although the act triggered an alarm, police were unsuccessful in finding him, despite the presence of dog squad.
Darling was released on parole on May 20, 2009 from Port Phillip Prison, after serving a nine-year sentence for raping a 13-year-old girl in 2000, whom he assaulted in her bed. He broke into her family's home to commit a burglary.
This is the second time Darling managed to escape from the facility. The first was in 2010 where he was on the run for two days.
Police issued an image (here) of Darling, warning he was a danger to the public and that Victorians should be on high alert.
He is described as Caucasian, stands about 176 centimetres tall, medium build, blue eyes, fair, close-cropped hair and a fair complexion. Both of his ears are pierced and he has tattoos on his right lower leg, back and arms.
He is known to frequent licensed venues and commonly wears camouflage clothing.
Members of the public are urged not to approach him and to phone 000 if he is seen.
Ararat Police had said there had been no confirmed sightings of Darling so far.
"Suffice to say all areas locally are being searched thoroughly," detective sergeant Peter Hawkins told Daily Mail Australia. "We're unable to say if he's local or further afield."
"Our inquiries are panning out across the state and Australia. Also any residents who notice stolen food or clothing should contact police."
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