Pima County Jail Escape: Sheriff says dangerous inmate “outsmarted the system”

Sheriff Chris Nanos is now investigating possible breakdowns in the facility structure and procedures
KOLD News 6-6:30 p.m. recurring
Published: Oct. 25, 2022 at 10:23 PM MST
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TUCSON, Ariz. (KOLD News 13) - It’s now been five days since a dangerous inmate escaped from the Pima County jail.

Oscar Alday slipped out while he was being booked into the facility.

Sheriff Chris Nanos gives some insight into how that happened.

We’ve reported on a jailbreak in 2020 and for 11 hours no one noticed the escape.

Nanos said escapes happen, but it’s rare.

Luckily in this case, staff spotted Alday slipping out the door. Considered armed and dangerous, he is still on the run.

He’s caught on camera after shedding his orange jail jumpsuit so no one would suspect he managed to escape from jail.

Exactly how this happened is what Sheriff Chris Nanos is investigating.

“This is somebody who outsmarted the system and found a way out,” Nanos said.

And it didn’t take much time.

Alday was coming into the jail in a high traffic area where inmates are also released.

Nanos estimate about 30 to 40 inmates at the time of the escape.

He’s now looking into a weakness in the facility itself.

“Maybe it’s a design situation that maybe we need to figure out a way to control that traffic a little better. Is there a way we can design that to occur in separate areas of that building,” Nanos said.

Or, he said, maybe tighten down their own controls to avoid mistakes made by staff.

He said the team has to be more vigilant and pay closer attention to every detail.

“It’s not so much falling asleep at the wheel. In this case, to me it’s more about we sometimes get in a hurry. I want to get this done because I’ve got this to do. We are certainly understaffed there and there’s a lot of work to do and a lot of work is going on, but it you cut corners, things like this happen,” Nanos said.

And now a massive search is on for an inmate who never even made it fully inside.

Nanos said there could be disciplinary action, but he wouldn’t give any more details because staff are given due process before final decisions are made.

KOLD will continue to stay on top of the search and any new safety measures enforced at the jail.