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It's best to give him his freedom gradually. Limited area, close supervision at first. The point is to not give him the chance to make an error, until you are sure he is 100% clear on the concept. He CANNOT mess in the house if he is properly supervised, so if a mess does appear you need to take a rolled up newspaper and whack yourself with it. Then gradually increase the size of the area, the time he is unsupervised (not both at once). Once he's completely reliable while you are home, try a short period alone and see how he reacts.

It's quite possible that he feels more secure in the crate, and being loose on his own could be a stressor that causes him to pee.
 

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He has peed/pooped in plain view WHILE being supervised so I'm at a loss.
Interrupt him and take him out, so that he is not successful at relieving himself outside and can be rewarded for going in the appropriate place. With observation and practice, you should start to be able to recognize the signs that he is about to go so that you can get him out BEFORE he starts.
 
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