UPDATE:Escaped convicted rapist still on the loose

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MCSO turns to public to find Cruz

UPDATE on 3/5: The following is a news release from the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office:

Adrian Cruz is a sexual predator that was serving life in the Arizona Department of Corrections for raping and impregnating a nine year old girl. Cruz recently came under the scrutiny of investigators in two additional rapes where the victims were young girls. After raping the young girls Cruz dumped them on the side of the road. Cruz was linked to these two heinous acts by his DNA and was standing trial for the rape of the two girls.

During the trial, Cruz seized the opportunity to escape from custody. At the time of the offenses and the trial, Cruz had no significant ties to the Phoenix Metropolitan area. Of note is while incarcerated within the Arizona Department of Corrections, Cruz engaged in numerous violent homosexual relationships.The Maricopa County Sheriff's Office in conjunction with United States Marshals Service is currently seeking any information which would lead to the capture of Cruz.

Adrian Cruz is a Hispanic male, with a tattoo on the top of his left hand of a rosary, the cross of the rosary is on Cruz's middle finger. Cruz also has a scar that runs from the middle of his back to the front left side of his abdomen.

Adrian Cruz is a convicted sexual predator and should be considered very dangerous.Adrian is considered to be serial rapist and is a danger to the community. Should you have any information in reference to the whereabouts of Adrian Cruz contact the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office at (602-876-1011).

ORIGINAL: PHOENIX - A sex offender is on the run and 3TV has learned more about how he escaped.

Adrian Cruz walked out of the courthouse, leaving behind a rap sheet and a lot of questions.


He is accused of several sexual assaults, some of them involving children, including a 9-year-old and a 15-year-old.

Deputies say the person who was supposed to be watching him must have walked away.

Cruz, now 28, was driving an ice-cream truck in 2004 when, investigators say, he raped and impregnated a 9-year-old. 3TV has video of him from 2005 when he was being sentenced to life in prison. Later DNA evidence linked Cruz to the kidnapping and sexual assault of two more women.

Dawn, who did not want us to publish her last name, was one of them. She tells 3TV she was stranded when Cruz offered her a ride.

"I accepted the ride and it was definitely a nightmare," she said. "I wasn't sure if I would survive it." She did and testified against Cruz last week.

Then it became another nightmare after Cruz slipped through the front doors of the Maricopa County Superior Court and escaped.

Dept. Chief David Trombi, of the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, admits, "Something was done wrong." They say deputies left the convicted rapist alone inside a holding cell. Trombi explains, " Our policy is that we're not to leave inmates unattended."

MCSO tells 3TV Cruz was handcuffed to a 3-foot chain attached to the floor but believe he picked the lock with a makeshift key.

Trombi says, "It can be made out of a paperclip, something he can grab off of a defense table, let's say, or a staple, let's say, and take and actually manipulate those locks."

Dressed in normal clothes Cruz walked through a holding door that should have been locked. When asked whether it was, in fact, locked, Trombi admits, "I don't know the answer to that, we don't know the answer to that."

His alleged victim knows one thing for sure.

"I know he's very dangerous. I know what he's capable of," she said. She also says she knows he does not belong back on the streets.

Deputies tell 3TV Cruz was in Arizona illegally and could be trying to flee back to Mexico. He does have family here, though, and investigators are talking to them.

In the meantime, Border Patrol agents tell 3TV they have pictures of him posted at the border crossings.