Category:  Fun

Jail Breaks on the Rise

The great escape from Alcatraz is the most notable prison break in history. Everyone has heard the story and the various conspiracy theories surrounding the event. Part of the draw to this story is the mystery surrounding the fate of the three escaped inmates. No evidence has ever been found to hint at either their demise or their freedom.

Due to a new show on the History Channel, however, this cold case is getting cracked open again. Families of the escapees are releasing evidence alluding to the possibility that the convicts made it to safety and lived out the rest of their lives as free men in Mexico. They have holiday cards and flowers to prove it. All the evidence the penitentiary ever had to offer was scattered pieces of a raft and the improbability – disbelief, really – that anyone could survive the rough tides of the Pacific Ocean in and around San Francisco.

It seems as though jailbreaks are making a comeback. Within the last six months there have been two major penitentiary escapes. In July, David Sweat and Richard Matt increased news ratings dramatically with the constant coverage surrounding the three-week manhunt in New York. America was on the edge of their seats every night at their dinner tables, waiting for Anderson Cooper to come on and offer the latest updates. Viewers had countless questions: how did they escape? Where are they now? Am I personally in danger? Speculation about a forbidden love triangle added more interest to the story each week.

Only a week after the capture of David Sweat and the shooting of Richard Matt, an even larger jailbreak headline hit the news. The famed Mexican drug lord Joaquin Guzman, also known as El Chapo, had escaped his high-security prison in Mexico. This was not the first time El Chapo had accomplished such a difficult fete. He had become a pro. His escape was  elaborately and meticulously planned.  He dug an entire underground tunnel system equipped with cars for the most efficient exit.

It is hard to fathom how inmates can manage to liberate themselves from such monitored and strict conditions. The establishments they reside are consider maximum security facilities. None of the people who escaped have college degrees. How could they outsmart hundreds of guards and modern technology?

Surprisingly, it is becoming more evident that it is not that inmates are too smart, or that there is a technology glitch. The guards are who need to be more closely examined. They can easily be bought or persuaded to act in favor of a criminal. If guards are not feeling appreciated or are not being paid enough, they will be more susceptible to temptation. For $200 they may turn a blind eye to the sound of a chisel coming from a certain cell.

Prisoners have all day and night to contemplate and strategize escapes and plans all they want.  In the Matt and Sweat, case all it took was offering a woman working in the infirmary some attention to persuade her to aide in their escape. The inmates had realized her weakness and took complete advantage of it.

Until penitentiary wardens find a way to convince guards to go against temptation or fear, there will always be a chance of another big jailbreak story making its way onto our TV screens tonight.

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