Convicted Murderer Escapes US Prison in Daring Crab-Walk and Razor Wire Jump

By | September 7, 2023

A murderer escaped from a jail in suburban Philadelphia by climbing a wall, crossing razor wire, and jumping from a roof, without being noticed by guards for an hour. The escape and subsequent manhunt for Danelo Cavalcante have attracted international attention. The prison is now considering additional security measures to prevent future escapes. Cavalcante was serving a life sentence for killing his ex-girlfriend and was trying to return to Brazil. The search for him continues, causing concern among local residents. Associated Press reported

A daring murderer has managed to escape from a suburban Philadelphia jail yard, leaving authorities and residents on high alert as the search enters its seventh day. The brazen breakout went undetected by guards for a shocking hour, allowing the killer to scale a wall, climb over razor wire, and jump from a roof. The escape of Danelo Cavalcante has garnered international attention, with his native Brazil’s main newspaper, Rio de Janeiro, running a detailed story under the headline “Dangerous hide-and-seek.”

The acting warden of Chester County Prison, Howard Holland, revealed the timeline and details of Cavalcante’s escape during a news conference. Security footage played during the conference showed the 34-year-old murderer standing in a passageway adjacent to the jail yard. He then used a technique known as “crab-walking” to ascend the walls, evading the camera’s view. Holland mentioned that the prison had taken measures to reinforce the area, including the addition of razor wire, after a previous escape in May.

Holland acknowledged that additional measures should have been implemented to enhance the prison’s physical countermeasures. He assured that the prison is actively addressing this oversight and is considering increasing officers’ presence during recreation times in the yard. Furthermore, they are exploring the possibility of caging the top of the yards to prevent future escapes. The escape investigation has been taken over by the Pennsylvania attorney general’s office.

Cavalcante, who had recently received a life sentence for murdering his ex-girlfriend, Deborah Brandao, in front of her children in 2021, managed to escape while awaiting transfer to a state prison. Prosecutors believe that Cavalcante killed Brandao to prevent her from informing the police about his involvement in a 2017 killing in Brazil. Having been captured in Virginia after Brandao’s murder, authorities suspect that he was attempting to flee back to Brazil.

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The search for Cavalcante has prompted two suburban Philadelphia school districts to close down, and even one of the nation’s premier botanical gardens had to shut its doors. Authorities have been actively pursuing the escaped murderer, with sightings reported six times since his escape. The most recent sighting occurred Tuesday night in a residential area, but Cavalcante quickly disappeared into the woods. On Monday night, he was captured on trail surveillance video walking through Longwood Gardens.

Based on this sighting, officials adjusted the search area, expanding it further south as they concluded that Cavalcante had likely slipped through the original perimeter set by law enforcement officers. Residents have been urged to remain vigilant, keeping their homes and vehicles locked and reporting any missing cars, bicycles, or other potential means of transportation that Cavalcante might utilize. The continuous manhunt has left local residents feeling uneasy and concerned about their safety.

Danielle Lawrence, a resident of Pocopson near the county’s jail, expressed her unease, stating that she no longer feels safe standing in her backyard without her husband. Ryan Drummond, whose home was broken into by Cavalcante, echoed these sentiments, emphasizing the frustration with the ongoing situation. Drummond highlighted that the search efforts are not to blame but rather the prison’s ability to prevent such incidents, questioning how it has taken almost a week to capture the escaped murderer.

As the search intensifies, authorities remain determined to apprehend Cavalcante and bring him back into custody. The added publicity and international attention have placed even more pressure on the law enforcement agencies involved, as they strive to ensure the safety of the community. With the Pennsylvania attorney general’s office leading the investigation, residents hope that the escapee will soon be found and brought to justice.

Edited By: Devika Bhattacharya
Published On: Sep 7, 2023.

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