CT prison employees, union speak out about escapee

Three days later and there's still no sign of the 25-year-old inmate who escaped from the Carl Robinson Correctional ...

Posted: Jan 11, 2018 3:32 PM
Updated: Jan 11, 2018 3:32 PM

Three days later and there's still no sign of the 25-year-old inmate who escaped from the Carl Robinson Correctional Facility in Enfield.

The Department of Correction, state police, and U.S. Marshals have joined the search, putting out a $1,500 reward for information on Jerry Mercado's whereabouts.

Meanwhile, there is still discussion about how he was able to get away in the first place.

"I think that this was probably an escape of opportunity that was sought by the inmate," said Colin Provost, president of CT State Prison Employees Union Local 391.

The Department of Correction believes Mercado stowed away under a state-owned maintenance van, or maybe a garbage truck that was on prison grounds around noon Sunday.

The president of the state prison employees' union said it happened on a day when fewer people are working.

"It is definitely decreased on weekends so we do have Monday through Friday officers on the compound. So, there was less on that day then there would've been on a Friday," Provost said.

The head of the DOC acknowledged there was an issue with security.

"We are examining security protocols at each of our 15 correctional facilities across the state," said DOC Commissioner Scott Semple.

Provost said a proactive approach is needed.

"Every facility staffing has been at lower levels then they were in 2011 and we've been cautioning against the possibility that we believe that they are gambling with this idea that lower staffing is going to remain safe on compounds and on the other facilities around the state," Provost said.

He said in years past, there were more eyes watching, especially outside at Carl Robinson.

"There was an additional perimeter officer and vehicle that was on the compound in 2011 and there was an additional rec yard officer that was reduced in 2015. Both of which would have had vantage points that could have decreased this opportunity," Provost said.

In a statement, Commissioner Semple said "Although we are within the early stages of the Carl Robinson escape investigation, preliminary reports do not indicate that staffing levels were a contributing factor to the breach. For safety and security reasons, we do not speak publicly on staff to inmate ratios or details about the approved post plan. We routinely review agency post plans which at times result in the addition of posts and at other times result in removing posts. Specific to the Carol Robinson location, I can confirm there hasn't been a significant fluctuation when compared to six years ago. Our focus remains on being an active partner in the efforts to apprehend escapee Jerry Mercado. The US Marshals recently announced a monetary award for information leading to Mercado's arrest and we encourage the public to contact law enforcement with information. As a precautionary measure, security audits are underway at all of the fifteen correctional facilities across the state."

As a security precaution, the DOC Commissioner says security audits are taking place at all 15 correctional facilities across the state.

Union officials say they estimate they're down, between layoffs and attrition, 205 positions between 2011 and mid-year 2016.

Huntsville
Clear
58° wxIcon
Hi: 76° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 58°
Florence
Clear
59° wxIcon
Hi: 65° Lo: 53°
Feels Like: 59°
Fayetteville
Clear
56° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 56°
Decatur
Overcast
55° wxIcon
Hi: 74° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 55°
Scottsboro
Few Clouds
59° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 54°
Feels Like: 59°
WAAY Radar
WAAY WAAY-TV Cam
WAAY Temperatures

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 136055

Reported Deaths: 2364
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Jefferson19752350
Mobile13449292
Montgomery8852184
Tuscaloosa8654118
Madison792778
Shelby601349
Lee592760
Baldwin552650
Marshall396143
Calhoun353444
Etowah352145
Morgan331428
Houston292021
Elmore267348
DeKalb243221
St. Clair233036
Walker231984
Talladega217129
Limestone211920
Cullman190720
Dallas179126
Franklin178129
Autauga177325
Russell17633
Lauderdale172333
Colbert166626
Blount161715
Escambia161124
Chilton158830
Jackson158111
Covington140327
Dale139244
Coffee13596
Pike120510
Chambers116842
Tallapoosa116485
Clarke110016
Marion96829
Butler91339
Barbour8857
Winston74512
Marengo72420
Pickens66614
Bibb65610
Lowndes65427
Randolph65413
Hale64428
Geneva6344
Lawrence62123
Cherokee61213
Bullock60614
Monroe5908
Clay5878
Washington55913
Perry5416
Crenshaw54032
Conecuh53611
Wilcox53211
Henry5075
Macon48318
Fayette4628
Sumter43819
Cleburne3825
Lamar3702
Choctaw35112
Greene30315
Coosa1723
Out of AL00
Unassigned00

Tennessee Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 192995

Reported Deaths: 2377
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Shelby30953459
Davidson26630306
Hamilton951995
Knox949779
Rutherford936189
Williamson531036
Sumner486598
Wilson351945
Putnam334940
Montgomery311144
Unassigned30425
Out of TN298627
Bradley296217
Madison292164
Sevier263815
Blount253524
Maury240924
Washington232836
Robertson222535
Sullivan219733
Hamblen193926
Tipton183219
Gibson170423
Trousdale16667
Hardeman158226
Wayne14995
Dyer138714
Bedford136417
Dickson127415
Coffee125413
Cumberland121718
Weakley120519
Fayette120419
Anderson120013
Obion119110
Henderson118924
Loudon11846
Carter117728
Greene116144
McMinn114625
Jefferson113014
Warren10757
Lawrence106713
Macon106721
Monroe105218
Hardin104716
Lauderdale99416
Haywood99221
Franklin9899
Lake9252
Roane9055
Carroll89920
McNairy89618
Bledsoe8624
White8479
Rhea84412
Hawkins82218
Cheatham81510
Marshall7785
Overton7586
Cocke7549
Smith73111
Johnson7262
Chester64310
Giles63117
Henry6289
Lincoln6241
Hickman5938
DeKalb57014
Crockett54219
Marion5338
Decatur5307
Fentress5263
Campbell4544
Claiborne4425
Polk39910
Grainger3863
Union3642
Benton3379
Jackson3315
Morgan3203
Grundy3095
Cannon2920
Unicoi2891
Humphreys2583
Sequatchie2381
Clay2335
Meigs2283
Houston2243
Scott2172
Stewart2142
Lewis2041
Moore1791
Van Buren1660
Perry1530
Pickett1232
Hancock1083

Community Events