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Shocking moment prisoner escapes from court without anyone noticing

Shocking moment prisoner escapes from court without anyone noticing

Gerald A. Hyde II managed to slip away while being escorted by guards

Footage showing a prisoner escaping from right under a guard's nose in a Washington courthouse is almost too shocking to believe.

Honestly, if you saw this in a movie, you'd probably laugh and claim that would 'never happen in real life'.

But in 2015, then-24-year-old Gerald A. Hyde II showed that escaping from custody doesn't always involve some elaborate plan. Sometimes, it can be as simple as slipping out of an open door.

Footage of Hyde's escape was caught by CCTV cameras at Benton County Superior Court in Washington, where Hyde was in custody after being convicted of possessing methamphetamine.

A guard was escorting Hyde out of the courtroom and into an interior hallway when they turned away from the inmate, taking their eyes off him for just long enough for him to make a run for it.

In the footage, Hyde can be seen sneaking backwards out of the hallway before bolting through the courtroom and out into the foyer.

Hyde stripped off his prison shirt to avoid detection.

He leaves behind his shoes and strips off his jail-issued shirt as he runs, before exiting through the door of the courthouse wearing a white vest and his jail-issued pants.

Though Hyde did successfully make it out of the courthouse, he was tracked down just a couple of hours later at a friend's apartment a couple of miles away.

Hyde was taken back into custody, and was hit with a second-degree escape charge for his brazen actions.

When asked about Hyde's escape, Commander Jon Law at the Benton County Sheriff’s Office said the inmate had escaped due to a 'blind spot'.

“Mr. Hyde stepped off into a corridor, a bit of a blind spot for the officer,” Law said. “In a perfect world we would have caught it and he wouldn’t have been able to get to that void and blind spot.”

Hyde was caught soon after escaping.

Hyde decided to represent himself on the charge, and argued in court that he did not technically escape from a detention facility because he was in the courthouse when he ran away.

Unfortunately, Hyde's argument didn't do much to win over the jury, who took just 13 minutes to convict him of running from corrections officers after a court hearing.

Hyde's original methamphetamine charge did end up being dismissed, but his guilty verdict on the escape charge landed him with two years and two months in prison.

In an effort to learn from Hyde's escape, the sheriff's office went on to position corrections officers to eliminate blind spots, and ensured courtroom doors were locked when court was not in session.

Featured Image Credit: Benton County Prison/A&E

Topics: US News, Crime, Viral