Dog who alerted owners to escaped inmate in backyard leading to his capture rewarded in toys

Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro took a moment on Tuesday to thank a family and their dog who helped capture an escaped inmate and accused murderer.

Tucker, a 6-year-old chocolate lab, alerted his owners, the Ecklunds, to a stranger on their Warren County property nearly two weeks ago.

That intruder was Michael Burham, an escaped prisoner with survivalist skills who was on the run for roughly nine days.

Michael Charles Burham escaped from a jail in northern Pennsylvania on July 7, 2023.Warren Police Department

Burham broke out of Warren County Prison on July 6 using tied-up bedsheets and elevating himself on exercise equipment, according to a county spokesperson.

“Obviously, there needs to be a full review of how the individual was able to escape, tighten that system up,” said Shapiro. “Obviously, the police and local law enforcement are going to do what they need to do to determine whether anyone should be charged in this process.”

Tucker found Burham in the Ecklund’s backyard and barked loudly enough that his owners came out to investigate.

When they spotted Burham, they quickly called the police and ended the manhunt.

Shapiro gifted Ron and Cindy Ecklund a reward check during his visit.

State police then gave Tucker plenty of new toys and treats for his act of bravery.

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