John Burke Inmate Facing Escape Charges

(Waupun) A John C. Burke Correctional inmate made his initial appearance in a Dodge County courtroom Thursday on charges that he failed to return with a prison transport van he was driving to pick up other inmates. Joshua Bonin is facing a felony count of Escape.

Bonin was tasked with picking up two other inmates working at Taycheedah Correctional in May. While in route, Bonin allegedly parked at the Fond du Lac Walmart. Authorities located the vehicle with the ignition off, doors locked and state issued clothing on the front seat. Walmart security cameras reportedly captured Bonin changing clothes before entering the store wearing a mask.

Prosecutors say Bonin left roughly 20 minutes later and was seen walking to the back of a nearby pet store. As deputies were returning the transport van, they allegedly spotted Bonin walking on Military Road and he was taken into custody. Bonin reportedly told investigators he was headed for the railroad to hitch a ride and if he made it, they would have never found him. He allegedly admitted his plans to cash in a hidden coin collection in Michigan to give to relatives.

Bonin was serving time for a 2011 conviction for Armed Robbery in Marinette County. If convicted, the 35-year-old faces up to an additional six years behind bars. A signature bond was set at $1000 yesterday and a judge will decide later this month if there is enough evidence to order a trial.