OKLAHOMA CITY - In a caper straight out of cartoons, inmates were caught allegedly lowering a rope made of bed sheets out of their cell. But Oklahoma County deputies were onto them, and their alleged friends on the outside were arrested.
Jail officers discovered the hole poked through on the building's 12th floor. Jail spokesperson Mark Opgrande said the officers waited to see what inmates were attempting.
Three days later a little after 3 a.m., officers discovered a line draped next to the wall.
"Basically a rope made with taking the sheets, tying it together, really thin pieces of the sheet," Opgrande said.
While the officers were standing there, they watched as a second line of bedding was lowered from the 12th floor hole.
"We realized at that point that they were probably preparing for someone that would be imminent to show up to try to give them contraband," Opgrande said. The officers took positions nearby and watched.
They didn't have to wait long. A vehicle drove back and forth past the building a few times before pulling into a parking lot on the north side of the detention center. The car turned around preparing to exit the lot when the captain on duty walked up to it to see what it was doing there. At the same time, a patrol car drove up behind the vehicle and activated its lights.
Surveillance video shows the people in the car took off and didn't stop for a couple blocks. When it did, officers detained the four women inside, Reba Brooks, Myra Brooks, Rochelle Hopkins, and Lisa Bruner.
"There were also two children in that vehicle too who were unrestrained," Oprande said.
Inside the vehicle, officers round marijuana, tobacco, cell phones, and an ecstasy pill wrapped together with duct tape.
Inmates digging through the inner and outer walls of the jail has been a problem since the first days inmates moved in after its construction in the 90s.
"It`s happened many times over the years, it`s something we continually monitor," Opgrande said.
This time, the culprits were caught in the act.
"It looked like maybe somebody was about to show up to try to smuggle something in. In this case their instincts were correct and the individuals showed up, detained, arrested, and now they`re all in jail right now as well," Opgrande said.
Charges against the women include eluding a peace officer, child endangerment, assault and battery with a deadly weapon, conspiracy to commit a felony, possession of marijuana, and possession of a controlled dangerous substance.
An investigation is still underway to pinpoint who was on the receiving end of the contraband.