SC officials: Illegal cellphone, drone aided inmate’s escape

SC officials: Illegal cellphone, drone aided inmate's escape

When it came time to make the Lieber Correctional Institution lights the afternoon of July 4, South Carolina prison officers, maximum security, thought that 1,300 inmates had gathered.

But convicted abductor Jimmy Causey was not in his litter, a full model home under the covers instead. When prison officials realized that Causey was away, she had gone for a whole day.

Authorities released new details of his plan after his capture in the early hours of Friday after more than two days on the run.

Assisted by wire cutting, according to authorities have been stolen by an unmanned aircraft, Causey was taken out of the cell, left the bedroom and passed through a series of wire fences. Authorities have not said whether they had a car start waiting.

But Causey escaped and quickly. By the time the officials confirmed that he was gone, Causey had an 18-hour lead from law enforcement. He did 1,200 miles (1,900 km) in Austin, Texas, where he was captured.

When authorities confiscated Causey on Friday morning while sleeping in a motel, he had a gun, a shotgun, four cell phones and $ 47,000 in cash.

Authorities are trying to extradite Causey to South Carolina, where he will be sent to one of the most secure facilities in the prison system. Authorities are still dealing with exactly what happened before and after the escape.

State Corrections Director Bryan Stirling did not say whether staff errors contributed to Causey’s escape, but told reporters Friday that an agent was on duty in the area near Causey Cell when he left.

Later Friday, prison officials told The Associated Press that an employee Lieber was fired as part of the Causey escape.

It was the second escape from Causey prison in 12 years. In 2005, Causey also used a model – one made of toilet paper – to encourage officials to think that he was asleep in his litter at another prison in South Carolina.

He and another inmate hiding in a garbage truck leaving the establishment of maximum security. They were detained three days later after a woman passes pizzas at a motel called to the police.

The use of drones has increased as a means to deliver smuggling, such as drugs and cell phones in prisons in the United States, including two recent cases in South Carolina.

In May, two men were arrested for attempting to steal knives, marijuana and telephones at a state-run security prison. Another man is serving a 15-year sentence after authorities have found an unmanned drone crashed outside a maximum-security institution in 2014.

Kevin Tamez, a 30-year veteran law enforcement practice who visits prison security as manager of the MPM group based in New Jersey, said he did not know of any other US prisons scams aided by UAVs.

Stirling said the state spent millions of dollars to install networks in prisons to prevent people from throwing things, but admitted that this will not stop the drones.

“Now they are going to fly above the nets,” he said. “So, what do we do now?”

Stirling is the smuggling of cell phones that poses the greatest threat to security both inside and outside the prison.

Last month, six prison officials were rescued after attempting to confiscate the cell phone of a detainee who triggered a fight in another prison in South Carolina.

In 2010, a former South Carolina prison official survived a six-time shoot at his home after officials said the detainee had planned the shooting and used an illegal cell phone to coordinate with the shooter.

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