6 inmates used rope made from bedsheets to escape from California jail

National News

MERCED, Calif. (AP/CBS Newspath) – Authorities in central California are searching for six inmates who used a “homemade rope” to escape from a county jail.

The Merced County Sheriff’s Office says all six should be considered armed and dangerous. Staff at Merced County Downtown Jail noticed late Saturday that the six inmates were missing.

Officials say a preliminary investigation has determined that the inmates were able to gain access to the roof of the facility and from there used the rope to scale down the side of the jail.

Merced County Sheriff Vernon Warnke later said the inmates use “makeshift rope out of braided sheets and were able to come down off the side of the building into an alleyway between our building and an adjacent building.”

Warnke said this was a rare event.

“I’ve been here 41 years, and the last time I remember anything out of the main jail was they’d actually had some inmate workers smuggled somebody out in the laundry basket,” he said.

Anyone who spots the fugitives is asked not to approach them and immediately call 911.

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