Tuesday, Aug 21, 2018
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Inmate admits escape plot

Convicted armed robber chipped hole in ceiling
Officers escort Fred Lifaite (left) and Mario Taylor from court yesterday. TORRELL GLINTON

Armed robbery convict Mario Taylor began plotting his escape from the Bahamas Department of Correctional Services from October 2017, a court heard yesterday.

But his plans were uncovered on August 3 when guards found a hole that he had painstakingly chipped into the cement ceiling of his cell in the maximum security block of the prison.

Taylor, 36, pleaded guilty to a charge of attempted escape and causing damage at his arraignment before Magistrate Kara Turnquest-Deveaux yesterday.

Before he was sentenced to concurrent sentences of three years for escape and two years for causing damage, Taylor apologized for his actions.

He also told the court that murder accused Fred Lifaite, who’s also facing charges of attempted escape and causing damage, was not involved in the plan. Lifaite, 45, pleaded not guilty and returns to court on October 4 for his trial.

Prosecutor Inspector Claudette McKenzie told the court that officers found a black plastic bag that contained a handmade cloth rope during a search of cell H-7 around 10:45 a.m. on August 3.

After checking the ceiling, the officers found that the hole in the ceiling had been concealed with newspaper, McKenzie said.

During an interview with police, Taylor said that he began planning his escape after he was sentenced for armed robbery on October 3.

Taylor said that he chipped away from the concrete in the ceiling with a piece of steel he had removed from the bathroom. Taylor did this while the other inmates on the block were exercising, the court heard.

He told investigators that he stood on three buckets to reach the ceiling and pulled the curtain to the cell for privacy.

Taylor told police that he went inside the hole several times and had also placed a bag of clothing inside the crevice for his break out.

Taylor said that he went into his manhole several times but could not cut the tin roof that lead outside, McKenzie said.

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