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Rogers County Sheriff's Office Thwarts Escape Attempt At Jail

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Michael McNickle and Jerome Shavers had special privileges they used to dig a hole in the jail vent system. Michael McNickle and Jerome Shavers had special privileges they used to dig a hole in the jail vent system.
The inmates used a spoon to dig a hole to the roof of the jail. The inmates used a spoon to dig a hole to the roof of the jail.
The men said they either planned to escape or have someone smuggle them contraband through the hole. The men said they either planned to escape or have someone smuggle them contraband through the hole.
The escape attempt led to a shakedown where other prisoners and their cells were searched. The escape attempt led to a shakedown where other prisoners and their cells were searched.
CLAREMORE, Oklahoma -

The Rogers County Sheriff's Office says it foiled an escape attempt by discovering a hole on the roof that connected to the kitchen inside the jail. Footprints led them to two inmates who admitted they were going to use the hole either to escape or have someone drop contraband down into the jail.

The Rogers County jail generally houses around 200 people, which is max capacity. "Getting ready for the shakedown" means moving inmates out of the cells and into the pods. The search involves public areas as well as the cells.

Each inmate is searched as well for contraband, which is anything not allowed or issued by the jail. They're issued clothes and flip flops and are allowed a couple books and a Bible, but even that has to be watched.

"We've had narcotics hidden in binders of Bibles and the paper pages of Bibles are the preferred rolling papers if you can't go buy them - all part of an incarcerated lifestyle that most people have no idea about," said Rogers County Sheriff Scott Walton.

The inmates can thank these two men, Michael McNickle and Jerome Shavers for Friday's shakedown. As trustees, they had work privileges in the kitchen, and deputies say they removed a vent and used a spoon to pry away obstacles to crawl through the venting to reach the roof.

There they created a hole that a person or contraband could fit through.

Because trustees are allowed to wear their own shoes, their shoe prints gave them away.

"Didn't take Sherlock Holmes to figure out these overachievers used this unique shoes to crawl around and identify themselves," Walton said.

Back in the cells, everything is suspect, even toilet paper rolls.

"There's some screws they took out of something," said Sergeant Jake Craig.

Officers find where inmates have removed caulk from windows to use to hang pictures; they find secret hidey holes created by digging out sealant and more.

"They'll keep fruit and make hooch, which is jailhouse liquor or alcohol," Sergeant Craig said.

It appears the hole in the roof was caught so quickly that no weapons or drugs were smuggled inside. he sheriff's department will be asking the district attorney to file attempted escape charges against the two men who accessed the roof from the venting.

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