Two Oklahoma women who were among four who escaped from the Federal Correctional Institution at Alderson, W.Va. during the weekend were arrested yesterday in Fort Smith, Ark.
Marjorie Potter, 49, and Patricia Roberts, 51, were arrested in a Denny's restaurant there by U.S. marshals who said they received a tip from marshals in Muskogee, Okla., 75 miles to the west. Potter was serving a seven-year sentence for robbery of a Muskogee savings and loan institution last year.
Deputy Robin Fagala said that the women surrendered without incident. Fagala said federal officials do not believe a third inmate who escaped with Potter and Roberts is in the area.
Dave Helman, administrative assistant at the women's prison, said that in addition to facing new charges of escape, they will face displinary proceedings at the prison.
Potter was convicted of taking $4,000 from a drive-up window, telling the teller, "I have a bomb."
Roberts, of Eufala, Okla., was serving time as a parole violator arising from a five-year term for embezzling. Federal officials said that she stole $84,000 from a bank in her home town.
Potter and Roberts escaped Sunday night, along with a third inmate, in what Helman said was the largest breakout in memory at the minimum-security facility.
Their companion in the escape, Evelyn Hewings, 33, of Virginia Beach, was still at large last night, as was a fourth prisoner, Maria Cardenas-Velillia, who fled alone last Friday night.
Hewings was serving five years for the theft of $100,000 from a Norfolk bank where she worked. Cardenas, of Caldas, Colombia, was serving 4 1/2 years for her part in what federal prosecutors said was a $1 million-plus drug smuggling operation.