Prison Escape Could Have Been Inside Job from a Professional

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( — June 12, 2015) — Two killers escaped last week from the Clinton Correctional facility in Dannemora. The escape was made after they cut a hole in a steam pipe and used it as their way out.

David Sweat, 34, and Richard Matt, 48, were either very proficient with the tools they used, or they had help from a professional, AP cited Larry Jeffords owner of Jeffords Steel and Engineering in upstate New York.

“It tells me either they are very good at what they do, with a lot of good training. Or they had very good equipment. Or somebody else cut the hole for them,” Jeffords commented on the images of cut pipe.

Before they cut the hole in the steam pipe, the two inmates were using power tools to break through the cell steel and cut through the brick wall so they could reach the steam pipe. After crawling through the pipe, they emerged from a manhole outside the 40-foot walls of the maximum-security prison about 20 miles south of the Canadian border, authorities said.

Another indicator that someone very experienced was using the tools is that no noise was reported by guards or anyone else in the prison. The noise presumably would have traveled up the pipe and echoed throughout the building

Because of nature of the escape, prison authorities believe prisoners had help from the inside, questioning every officer, however, they couldn’t find anything indicating how they obtained the power tools or how they used them with such expertise.

On Saturday, while making the morning rounds inside the 170-year-old Clinton Correctional Facility, guards found the inmates’ beds stuffed with clothes the next morning. The runaway prisoners even left a note for the guards containing a crude Asian caricature and the words “Have a nice day.”

Jeffords, who worked at the prison, told AP that he was subject to daily searches entering and leaving the facility. A guard never left his side and all the equipment was inventoried at the end of the day, he said.

As he explained, the cutting of the cell wall and steel pipe would have taken about four hours of continuous work. According to Jeffords, he couldn’t believe that no one had seen the sparks or heard the tools when the men cut through the steel.

“The grinding dust is tremendous — sparks, smoke,” said Jeffords, suggesting that the prisoners used a grinder.

“To do that with a grinder and to do as nice a hole as they did, I just can’t see it done. I’m in the steel business and I’ve said before I could have sent my best man up there with an acetylene torch or a plasma cutter and I couldn’t have a better hole,” Jeffords said.