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Sheriff’s office searching for escaped Geiger inmate

Spokane County sheriff’s investigators descended on a Spokane home where they thought escaped Geiger inmate Michael S. Wheeler might be hiding Tuesday.

Investigators got a tip that 38-year-old Charles B. Fife may have assisted Wheeler, who escaped from the Geiger Corrections Center Jan. 27, said sheriff’s spokesman Deputy Mark Gregory.

They tried to contact Fife just before 4:45 p.m. at a residence located in the 800 block of South Adams Street, but as they approached and identified themselves, Fife ran inside, Gregory said.

Not knowing if Wheeler was inside, authorities set up a perimeter and requested assistance. Fife came out after several commands from authorities and the arrival of a Spokane Police Department K-9 unit.

They searched the home, but Wheeler was not found inside.

Fife was booked into Spokane County Jail for second-degree rendering criminal assistance, obstructing a peace officer and a state Department of Corrections hold. Two females and a male who authorities also contacted were released.

Wheeler was working as a kitchen inmate worker when he escaped.

He is 38 years old, white, 5 feet 8 inches tall, 170 pounds, with brown hair and brown eyes. He was in custody for attempting to elude, possession of a stolen vehicle, assault of a health service provider, unlawful possession of a firearm, possession of stolen property, residential burglary and theft charges.

Anyone with information about Wheeler’s location should call 911 or Crime Check at (509) 456-2233.

Crime Stoppers of the Inland Northwest is offering a cash reward for any information leading to his arrest. Those with information also can call the Crime Stoppers Tip Line at 1-800-222-TIPS, or visit Tipsters do not have to give their name to collect the cash reward.

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