By Calvin Palmer
Metal ceiling panels do not a prison make. Three male and three female inmates at Greene County Jail in southern Indiana found a way of removing them to sneak between cellblocks to have sex.
The men – ages 44, 38 and 17 — and the women – ages 27, 26 and 21 — crawled through the ceiling after midnight more than a dozen times in September and October to have sex and drink homemade alcohol found in the male cellblock, according to a police affidavit.
The inmates were able to find a security camera “blind spot” where they could remove the ceiling tiles and create a passage between the cellblocks, Sheriff Terry Pierce said.
He added: “They used a shower drain as a tool to loosen security screws and the ceiling tiles were carefully replaced so they did not appear to be disturbed. We could not see it.”
The ceiling tiles have since been secured and Pierce said he was seeking funding to improve security at the jail, which was built in 1994 about 25 miles southeast of Bloomington.
The activities of these inmates have caused a certain amount of embarrassment for staff at the jail.
“If your facility has a flaw, the prisoners will show you,” Pierce said. “They will find it. “We are going to have to find a way to have a better security system.”
Prosecutors have filed felony escape charges against the six inmates who were awaiting trial on a variety of charges. Five of them remain in Greene County Jail; one has been transferred to the Monroe County Jail in Bloomington.
Police say the investigation is ongoing and other current or former inmates may be charged.
The subsequent court case should prove interesting since none of the inmates actually “escaped” from the jail; they simply moved around within its confines. But I guess Indiana state law doesn’t cover prison officials being made to look stupid.
[Based on a report by the Associated Press.]