Drone possibly used to aide in SC inmate’s escape

Jimmy Causey

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WCBD/AP) – Investigators say an inmate who escaped for the second time from maximum security prisons in South Carolina used wire cutters that were likely dropped from a drone.

State Law Enforcement Division Chief Mark Keel said 46-year-old Jimmy Causey was arrested around 4 a.m. Friday as he slept in a motel room in Austin, Texas. Authorities got a tip at around 1 a.m. Friday, July 7, where they tracked him down to that motel.

We’re told he did not resist arrest.

Keel says Causey had more than $47,000, a semi-automatic pistol, a pump shotgun, ammunition and several cell phones when he was caught after more than two days on the run in a well-planned escape.

At a news conference in Columbia on Friday, July 7, authorities said Causey left Lieber Correctional Institution on July 4 at around 8 p.m. After receiving word of his escape, officials verified at around 2 p.m. on July 5 that he was missing.

Stirling says Causey was likely gone from prison for six hours before guards noticed a dummy was placed in his bed.

South Carolina Corrections Director Bryan Stirling says Causey used a cellphone to arrange his escape, and a drone likely dropped the wire cutters Causey used to cut through four fences at the Lieber on July 4.

News 2 met with a done professional to see how easily that can happen.

Okey Parsons has been flying drones commercially for 4 years. He says drones can be used in many positive ways, like search-and-rescue missions or surveying forest fires. However, some people misuse drones and will fly them in inappropriate places or illegally transport items.

Parsons says a drone can usually carry about 5 pounds.

He says it is very easy for someone on the outskirts of a prison to drop contraband to an inmate if the drone isn’t caught.

The Federal Aviation Administration does have a number of regulations when it comes to flying drones.

Authorities believe there are a number of people who assisted in the escape. They are currently being tracking down, in order to be brought to justice.

The investigation will now turn to lapses in policy and procedure at the prison, which is part of the post-capture process.

We’re told Causey was in with the general population at the time of the escape.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s