Maricopa County Court Escapee Needed Help From Guards

by Brian A. Wilkins
2/18/2009

Anybody who is a semi-regular visitor to this website knows I spent “55 Days In Maricopa County Jail” last year. I took you through a few court dates in the blogs, which I don’t expect to finish publishing the last 15-plus days until this ordeal is over. That said, there is no way in living or dying hell the 28-year-old now ex-inmate could have escaped the downtown Phoenix Maricopa County courthouse without help from a guard.

The guy was caught on surveillance video walking out the front door of the courthouse in civillian clothes. Writing that sentence just now made me laugh out loud! Even if the guy had people working for him on the outside, there is no way they could have even gotten to where the holding cells are without walking through hallways or door generally frequented by judges, attorneys, and jail guards. Trust me, there were a few times I and a few other guys who were in there (and some still are) tried to plot escapes out of the Lower Buckeye Jail. That place sucks, and sucks even more when you’ve been wrongfully incarcerated.

The first people Maricopa County investigators need to question is every guard who has possessed a key to that holding cell anytime in the past 3 weeks. The only way even a helper from the outside could possibly get keys to open those holding cell doors is, again, from a current or former guard. And the ex-inmate would have needed someone to bring him the changing pair of clothes. That person maybe could have dressed in a suit to look like a lawyer, but all those prosecutors and public defenders work with one another everyday, so its likely pretty rare for unfamiliar faces to be in those courthouses hallways.

What I am about to say is the result of being wrongfully incarcerated for almost two months in the very place this guy escaped from: I’m kind of rooting for him. If he goes straight to Mexico, gets out of our country, and doesn’t hurt any Americans on his way there, more power to him. I swear seven months ago, I would have never said that. Plus if this guy had a change of clothes and walked out the front door on his own two feet (and not hidden in a trunk or something), there’s no way Maricopa County authorities are smart enough to catch him anyway. Better call in the bureau, considering Maricopa County was already dumb enough to let a prisoner open those metal holding cell doors, get street clothes, walk out the front door, and not be arrested. The guy almost deserves his freedom if he’s gotten this far.

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