Two alleged criminals facing life in prison for murder planned an escape from the Chester County Prison in West Chester. Their plans were thwarted last Tuesday.
It is reported that Shamek Hynson, 32, and Saleen Williams, 21, aided by their girlfriends, developed a plan to break through security glass inside the prison’s visiting area and arm themselves with weapons from the outside. According to the plan, the inmates would then fight their way out of the prison to a waiting car and eventually travel to Mexico.
According to District Attorney Tom Hogan, the plot was first discovered as the result of a contraband investigation. In September correctional officers found drugs hidden in mail addressed to Williams’ cellmate. Inside that mail, Hogan said, correctional officers found references to one of the women, whose name was then discovered on Williams’ visitor list.
That led investigators to review recorded conversations that indicated the group was forming a plan, according to court documents. The inmates and their girlfriends appeared to understand that their conversations were monitored and often spoke in code, officials said.
Correctional officers eventually found a conversation in which one of the women allegedly described the methods she would use to send Williams the drugs. Officials said those conversations also contained references to Hynson, which led investigators to review correspondence between him and his girlfriend as well.
It was in those letters, Hogan said, that correctional officers first learned of the escape plot when Hynson mentioned that he and Williams would need more money when they went into hiding.
“At that point this case became a race against time,” Hogan said. “The Prison and Chester County Detectives realized they weren’t just dealing with a contraband case anymore, they were dealing with a potential prison break.”