Prisoner on the lam; officials searching

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, January 7, 2004

GREENSBORO &045;&045; Local and state law enforcement officials are continuing the search for an escaped prisoner who could have made parole in less than six months.

Brian Corbett, spokesman for the Alabama Department of Corrections, said David Curtis Wood, 46, escaped from the Farquhar Cattle Ranch minimum security prison in Greensboro early Saturday morning and is still at large three days later.

Curtis was serving a life sentence for shooting his now ex-wife, who lives in Mobile, which is the reason Mobile authorities are helping with the investigation.

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If Curtis is recaptured, Corbett said his chances for parole will all but diminish.

The original sentence was life in prison.

Farquhar Cattle Ranch, located off County Road 73 in Greensboro, spans 4,610 acres and is used by the state to raise cattle and catfish.

According to Corbett, the state currently has around 420 head of cattle at the ranch, and that herd is culled annually of nonproductive cows, which are sold at competitive bid at a stockyard.

The catfish production is a commercial operation with 35 ponds on 400 acres. Of the ponds, 15 are production ponds, 4 are used primarily for brood ponds, and 16 ponds for fingerlings. A hatchery produces the fingerlings, which are used for restocking the production ponds after the fish are sold. Any surplus fingerlings are sold through open bid to local catfish farmers.

In addition to the revenues generated from the cattle and catfish operations, further revenues are generated from the sale of quail, pecans, horses, and goats, according to the DOC.