A prisoner who was serving a life sentence at HMP North Sea Camp fled from the open prison just days after being transferred in, Lincoln Crown Court was told.
Wayne Jones, who was given a life sentence back in 2001 after admitting a charge of rape, was discovered missing during an evening check of inmates on November 25, 2018.
The 39-year-old made his way as far as Sleaford before being spotted and arrested the following morning.
Edna Leonard, prosecuting, told the court: “The defendant was serving a life sentence imposed in 2001. He was transferred to North Sea Camp, an open prison with no perimeter fence, earlier in November of last year.
“On the evening of November 25 one of the officers was checking on the whereabouts of the defendant and realised he wasn’t on the premises and had escaped. He pinched a bike and he cycled off.
“The following morning a member of the public phoned the police. The police attended. He tried to run off and he was arrested and taken back to the prison.”
Jones, formerly of Stockport, admitted escaping from custody on November 25. He was given a six month jail sentence.
Chris Jeyes, in mitigation, told the court: “Finding an opportunity, he took it. He knows he shouldn’t have done. He was away for one night
“Before he was in North Sea Camp he was in HMP Wakefield which is the largest high security prison in Europe.
“Quite how he was ever expected properly to adjust to conditions moving from the very highest security category to the very lowest is not clear particularly when he had been in prison so long in a high security jail.
“The move was doomed to failure from the outset. It would be extremely difficult for him to cope with.”
Judge Andrew Easteal, passing sentence, told Jones: “You were at large only for a matter of hours. It seems to have been spontaneous, stupid, ill-thought out and, I suspect, bitterly regretted by you now.”
Jones received his life sentence at Manchester Minshull Street Crown Court in February 2001 after admitting charges of rape and burglary.