Escaped inmate reportedly spotted in Houghton

HOUGHTON – An inmate who has been on the loose since escaping Houghton County custody in June may have been spotted in Houghton Thursday.

John Saatio, 35, was reportedly seen walking on U.S. 41 near the Michigan Technological University campus about 10:50 a.m., the Houghton County Sheriff’s Office said.

Deputies and local police seated the Houghton and Hancock areas, but found nobody matching Saatio’s description.

A detective from the sheriff’s office interviewed the eyewitness and said there is a high possibility the person seen was Saatio.

Saatio was described Thursday as wearing a black ballcap, blue jacket, blue jeans and glasses. He was described as having a skinnier face and a slight beard. He is about 6 feet tall.

As of 2 p.m. Thursday, there had been no other sightings of him in the area, the department said.

Saatio escaped custody in June on the way back from a hearing in Houghton County Circuit Court. He was in jail on charges of third-degree home invasion, destruction of police property and probation violation.

After stealing a car in Houghton, he abandoned it in the Green Bay area, where he was seen the day after. No sightings had been reported since that weekend.

Anyone who thinks they may have seen Saatio is asked to contact the Sheriff’s Department at 482-0055.