Multiple sources are reporting that a South Carolina prison officials suspect Jimmy Causey, a prisoner at the Lieber Correctional Institution, may have used a drone to fly in tools that enabled him to break out of the institution. Mr. Causey was recaptured in Texas Friday. He escapted on July 4th.
“We 100 percent know a cellphone was used or multiple cellphones were used while he was incarcerated, and we believe a drone was used to fly in the tools that allowed him to escape,” Bryan Stirling, the director of the South Carolina Department of Corrections, said at a news conference on Friday. Mr. Causey was serving a life sentence for kidnapping a lawyer.
He escapted after using wire cutters that likely were dropped onto prison grounds from a drone, said Mr. Stirling.
Authorities received a tip early Friday that led them to a Motel 6 in Austin, Tex., where Mr. Causey, 46, was staying, according to Mark Keel, the head of the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division. Texas Rangers were notified and found him there around 4 a.m., he said. He was asleep at the time and did not resist arrest. He had a semiautomatic pistol, a pump shotgun, extra ammunition, four cellphones and $47,654 in cash. The source of the money was not disclosed. officials with the authority to jam cellphone signals at their institutions.
“No longer are people stopped from continuing their criminal ways from behind bars. They are physically incarcerated, but they are no longer virtually incarcerated,” Mr. Stirling said.
Gov. Henry McMaster on Friday sent Twitter messages to the Federal Communications Commission saying the agency needs to allow state officials to jam cell signals.