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Beadle County's History Of Escapes

January 10, 2013, 6:02 PM by Don Jorgensen

Beadle County's History Of Escapes

Charles Beeney's escape from the Beadle County jail earlier this week isn't the first time someone has escaped from the correctional facility. In fact, it's had a history of escapes over the last decade.

In 2003, Jason Heasley escaped from the Beadle County jail by scaling the wall in the recreational area. It prompted an intense search throughout central South Dakota, as law enforcement scoured the countryside searching fields and farmyards. Heasley, who was considered armed and dangerous, was eventually caught and brought back to jail.

A year later, three girls being held in the juvenile detention area pulled off a daring escape. Two guards were searching an inmate's cell for contraband when the three girls pushed the guards into the cell and locking them inside then fleeing on foot. The three girls were later caught in Lake Andes.

Then in January 2005, the unthinkable happened again.

"I woke up to my alarm clock and turned on the TV and I heard Heasley escaped again. I just shook my head and wondered how can that happen again, same place, same jail," Justin Olson with Minnehaha County Sheriff's department said.

Heasley and another inmate, Justin Mynatt, escaped from the Beadle County jail after bending the bars and breaking a window in their cell.

Again, authorities were on a statewide manhunt, but this time the Heasley and Mynatt were found just days later in Des Moines, Iowa.

Beadle County authorities said then what they're saying now. What can they do to make their jail safer and more secure for the inmates and their staff?

"We've got bullet proof glass.  We've got bars on the windows.  If somebody is determined enough, they're going to get out," Beadle County Sheriff Deputy Jim Sheridan said.

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