A Geneva County correctional officer and a deputy thwarted two inmates’ attempt to escape the county jail yard.

Geneva County Sheriff Tony Helms confirmed two jail inmates had gotten out of the dome area of the jail, and were headed to fenced-in area of the grounds trying to escape when a deputy caught the inmates before they attempted to climb the razor wire fence.

“It was determined the inmates had located a piece of metal and fashioned a tool to be used as a small screwdriver,” Helms said. “With the tool the inmates were able to remove part of the door lock.”

Helms credits the inmates being caught to the hard work of a correctional officer and a deputy.

“The correctional officer was doing her job, and it paid off,” Helms said. “She noticed a security camera had been moved, and the video displayed by the camera was out of focus. After she noticed these two issues of concern, she contacted a deputy. The deputy arrived on scene and located which door the inmates had opened, catching the inmates before they attempted to climb the razor fence.”

The age of current jail and its lack of some security features played a role in the escape attempt, Helms said.

“In the past we have had suspects run out the door of the booking area due to the area not being secure,” Helms said. “We have also had inmates escape when a door does not lock properly. Unfortunately, this is a concern for every jail. But, hopefully with the new jail being a modern- constructed facility using up-to-date technology and equipment, we can provide a more secure facility for our community.”

Helms believes the additional correctional officers scheduled to be hired once the new jail is open, will also benefit will all security issues.

Meanwhile, jail personnel are constantly addressing issues with the facility. Holes in the jail were recently filled with Sakrete to repair certain areas where the concrete was cracking and breaking down, Helms said. Some metal features in the jail show signs of significant rust, causing the metal to rust through.

Both inmates captured could face an additional charge of attempted escape.

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