UPDATE:      Illinois State Police on Wednesday morning captured an inmate who escaped from a southern Illinois prison on Tuesday afternoon.

21 year old Marcus Battice was taken into custody without incident at about 7:30 a.m. on foot along Interstate 70 about 3 1/2 miles from Vandalia Correctional Center.

Battice got over the fence at the Vandalia facility about 2 p.m. on Tuesday. Search dogs from the county sheriff's department were deployed in the search as well as staff from other state prisons.

Battice was serving a four-year sentence for unlawful possession of a stolen vehicle in Cook County. He was scheduled for release Jan. 18, 2015.

ORIGINAL STORY

An inmate escaped Tuesday afternoon from a southern Illinois prison, officials said.

Marcus Battice, 21, got over the fence at Vandalia Correctional Center about 2 p.m., according to Tom Shaer, spokesman for the Illinois Department of Corrections.

Shaer said the way Battice got out from the rear of the facility remains under investigation.

Battice was serving a four-year sentence for unlawful possession of a stolen vehicle in Cook County. He was scheduled for release Jan. 18, 2015.

Shaer said the Illinois State Police is assisting the Corrections Department. Search dogs from the county sheriff's department have been deployed as well as staff from other state prisons.

According to Corrections records, Battice is a black man, 5-foot-9 and 167 pounds, wearing a blue shirt, dark pants and white sneakers.

Vandalia is about 70 miles northeast of St. Louis.

Shaer said it is the first actual escape from a prison "in years."

Jared Carter walked away from a prison work crew outside the walls of Robinson Correctional Center in August 2013 and was captured Sept. 3 of that year in a town about seven miles away. He was sentenced to 11 more years in prison.

Marina Nezhinkay