The big news in the "north country" as we call northeast New York, is that two convicted murderers have escaped from a local maximum security prison.
Prisons are big business up this way, in fact, they employ a great number of people around here.
As you know, I worked in one, Great Meadow Correctional Facility, for twenty years, as a nurse.
The convicts escaped from Clinton Correctional Facility, in the little town of Dannemora, NY, not far from the Candadian border, and 2 hours from where I live.
Somehow, they managed to get the power tools necessary to cut holes in the walls behind their beds, access the pipe chase between the two rows of cell blocks, climb down 6 stories, cut through a double brick wall, cut INTO a stainless steel pipe, crawl a long ways through the pipe, and cut OUT of the pipe, and up through a manhole that was chained closed.
Incredible, for many reasons.
Where did they access the power tools?
Why didn't anyone hear them, because they did not do all this work in a day?
How did they know the layout of the bowels of that prison?
I have been on those cell blocks, the old prisons are almost identical in the way that they were built. The cells are 5' x 9'. Where on earth do you move the bed, so that you can cut a hole behind it???
There is traffic up and down the walkway, or "company" as they call it, all day and all evening long, correction officers, medical staff, counselors, and more.
It is inconceivable to me, that they could have done this without someone hearing them.
It has come to light, that a woman in her 50's who worked there, and supervised BOTH inmates in a tailor shop, has been found to have assisted them. They found calls on her cell phone to one of the inmate's family. The morning that they escaped, she presented at the hospital in a panic attack and got admitted. She finally confessed that she was supposed to pick them up, but changed her mind at the last minute, if you can believe that she didn't take them somewhere first, and THEN have a panic attack.
She should have been in a panic LONG before that, in my opinion.
I have heard people say, "how could she get involved like that, with a prisoner, and especially one with such a violent crime?"
(One of the inmates killed a sheriff, and the other killed and dismembered his boss.)
It's actually quite common. Women, by the droves, get involved with incarcerated felons. Some of them knew the men before, and some of them answer ads in the newspapers and start a relationship, or some "friend" hooks them up. It is crazy, to most of us, but perfectly reasonable to the women who do it. They often end up marrying them. Women who work in the prisons, who get involved with inmates, lose their jobs, often their families, and certainly their reputations.
The inmates have everything to gain. If you have a woman on the outside, she can send you letters, and packages of things you want, she can put money into your inmate account so you can buy food and stuff from the commissary, and she visits you in the visiting room and breaks up your boring, monotonous life. She accepts collect calls from you, so you have that to look forward to on the nights that it is your turn to use the phone. And if you get married, you might even qualify for trailer visits for weekend sexual encounters. What' not to like from their perspectives??
The woman's life suddenly revolves around making this incarcerated man happy, costing her loads of money and time, and emotionally she can fool herself into thinking he is the love of her life.
And these guys are very good at making a woman believe she is everything to them.
What else do they have to do???
One woman who came to visit an inmate where I worked, was shocked when one day she came, and he wasn't there. His WIFE had picked him up on his release. SHE had been obsessed with this relationship for a few years, only to find out that she wasn't the only one.
I have seen several women fired for having relationships with inmates, women who were bright and who appeared to have their lives together, but who gave it all up for "love", totally hoodwinked by a criminal mind.
A nurse that I worked with became involved with the inmate who cleaned the hospital area, she lost her job, she married him, and as far as I know, she is still waiting for him to get out. He has been in jail since 1984. I wonder, still, how she makes that work in her mind.
Everyone in New York and Vermont is on the alert. The manpower being used to hunt for these guys is incredible, and expensive.
We can only hope that they are caught before they kill someone, because they are certainly capable of that, and at this point, they have nothing at all to lose.
From my own perspective, having worked in a max prison, I feel the same way about it now, that I did all those 20 years there. Women like this woman who helped them escaped make all the women who work in corrections look bad, women who support their families, who take their jobs seriously, women who are strong in their dealings with felons. She makes them ALL suspect.
And to be blunt, that just pisses me off.