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Man who escaped police custody in East Harlem turns himself in three days later

Arthur Collins, 57, from a previous arrest for

Arthur Collins, 57, from a previous arrest for possession of Marijuana in 2012. Collins escaped from a holding cell in the 25th Precinct during arrest processing Friday, July 24. Photo Credit: DCPI

The 57-year-old man who escaped a East Harlem police precinct over the weekend turned himself in to a Manhattan courthouse Monday, police said.

Arthur Collins surrendered at Manhattan Criminal Court after three days on the lam following the breakout from the 25th Precinct station house on Friday afternoon.

Collins was charged Monday with several offenses, including second-degree escape, second-degree criminal trespass, and resisting arrest.

Collins was held in lieu of $25,000 cash bail or $50,000 bond at his arraignment, a spokeswoman for the Manhattan district attorney's office said.

"As soon as he was able to, he turned himself in. He's not afraid of facing the charges," said his attorney, Rick Pasacreta, who added Collins had a doughnut as his last meal at the courthouse when he did. "He was very cooperative with the court officers."

Collins was first arrested on Friday when the superintendent of a building on Madison Avenue, near 126th Street, spotted him there at about 2:10 p.m. and said he didn't belong, according to court records. When police tried to handcuff Collins, he apparently ran. He was caught, however, before he could leave the building.

Collins was apparently carrying several drugs on him, including 13 foil packages of crack cocaine, a bag of powdered cocaine, an envelope of heroin, and a tin of marijuana. He also allegedly had a firearm silencer in a box marked "9 mm".

They placed him in a holding cell inside the precinct while they processed his arrest at about 3 p.m. But when they went to check on him at about 6:30 p.m., they found he was gone.

His attorney, Pasacreta, said Collins turned himself in after a family member called him over the weekend to tell him police were looking for him.

Pasacreta said the charges are "overstated."

"He should not have been arrested in the first place because the nexus of this was an alleged trespass," he said. "That's where he was living. He wasn't even trespassing at the time."

It was not immediately clear what Collins did while he was on the run.

His next court appearance is scheduled for July 31.


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