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SCDC: Inmate Escapes!




In the latest embarrassing headline for the S.C. Department of Corrections (SCDC), a well-known inmate has escaped from one of the agency’s “maximum security” facilities … prompting a massive manhunt.

According to reporter Meg Kinnard of the Associated Press, 46-year-old Jimmy Causey escaped from Lieber Correctional Institution in Ridgeville, S.C. shortly before 2:00 p.m. EDT on Wednesday.

Causey is serving a life sentence on kidnapping, armed robbery and first-degree burglary charges related to his role in a high-profile 2002 home invasion case.

Causey broke into the home of his former lawyer – prominent Midlands, S.C. defense attorney Jack Swerling – holding him and his family at gunpoint for hours.

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Believe it or not, this isn’t Causey’s first escape.  In 2005, he and another inmate escaped from SCDC’s Broad River Correctional Institution by hiding in a garbage truck.  They were found in a hotel room in Jasper County, S.C. two days later after a woman delivering them a pizza recognized them.

Causey’s accomplice in that escape – convicted murderer Johnny Brewer – hanged himself in his jail cell two years later.

Causey is 6-foot-2, 177 pounds with short brown hair and blue eyes.  Here’s his latest mug shot …

(Click to view)


SCDC has bounced from one scandal to the next under its current director, former gubernatorial chief of staff Bryan Stirling.  Nonetheless, Stirling – who was appointed to his post by former governor Nikki Haley – remains one of the top candidates to become the next United States attorney for the state of South Carolina.

One recent scandal we covered involved concerns over inmate labor crews collecting trash and performing roadside landscaping work in suburban neighborhoods.  Commenters on that post indicated we were “too harsh” in raising questions about this program, but our guess is it will receive further scrutiny in the aftermath of Causey’s escape.

Especially given his “occupation” as a tree-trimmer.


Causey captured at 3:05 a.m. EDT on Friday, July 7 by agents of the Texas Department of Public Safety (TxDPS).



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