Handcuffed man breaks out of Altoona police car, found cuffed in Dauphin County, police report

Local News

ALTOONA, Pa. (WTAJ) — An Altoona man, who was arrested for reported shoplifting, broke free and was later found multiple counties away while still in handcuffs.

Police were called to Dollar General on N. 4th Avenue in the Juniata section of Altoona just after 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 15 for a suspicious male who was in the store for several hours, looking at the store’s surveillance cameras. Once there, they found Christopher Catich who has put several items in his pants pockets. He was ultimately handcuffed and put in the back of an APD police car.

While continuing the investigation, police say that Catich shattered the rear driver’s side window of the cruiser and crawled out, running on foot. Catich eventually ran to Norfolk Southern where he jumped into a train car.

Christoph Catich, photo courtesy of the Altoona Police Department

Catich was found Thursday morning in Dauphin County while still wearing the handcuffs. Arrangements are being made to transport him back to Blair County for arraignment.

Police report that Catich is charged with felony escape, flight to avoid apprehension, retail theft, theft, receiving stolen property and criminal mischief. He is currently in custody in Dauphin County.

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