A convicted murderer who escaped a Pennsylvania prison last week was filmed climbing between two walls to reach the facility’s rooftop, a tactic that was used by another inmate at the same prison earlier this year.
Surveillance video released Wednesday shows Danelo Cavalcante, 34, carefully positioning himself between the walls in a Chester County Prison exercise yard with his body stretched horizontally, so that his hands reach one wall and his feet the other. He then scales the walled passage, vanishing out of sight.
A tower guard, who is now on administrative leave, failed to see Cavalcante as he made his way through razor wire and out of the prison Thursday. It wasn’t until about an hour later that he was discovered missing during an inmate count, according to Howard Holland, the acting prison warden.
“While we believed our security measures we had in place were sufficient, they have been proven otherwise,” Holland said amid criticism over the similarities between Cavalcante’s escape and one in May.
That month, inmate Igor Bolte also scaled two walls in the exercise yard and onto the roof. He was spotted by a guard and captured within five minutes.
After Bolte’s break, razor wire was added to the exercise yard’s rooftop to prevent a repeat. Now, following Cavalcante’s escape, additional reinforcements will be added, Holland said.
Danelo Cavalcante, who was convicted of fatally stabbing his former girlfriend, escaped from a suburban Philadelphia prison last week.
“We know the gravity of the situation and how it has impacted our community negatively,” he told reporters.
Cavalcante was convicted of first-degree murder and sentenced to life in prison without parole last month for fatally stabbing former girlfriend Deborah Brandao in front of her young children.
According to prosecutors, the 2021 killing was carried out to prevent Brandao from telling police that he was wanted on charges in a 2017 slaying in Brazil. Cavalcante was thought to be trying to return to the country when he was captured in Virginia after Brandao’s death.
He has been spotted five times since his escape. Cavalcante was last seen Monday on a trail camera at Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, about 4 miles south of Chester County Prison.