Footage Captures Brazen Escape by Inmates at Canadian Jail

Two inmates held onto a rope as the aircraft departed the prison's roof.

March 16, 2016, 1:33 PM

— -- The footage from a 2013 brazen prison break in Canada, in which two inmates escaped via a helicopter, was recently released and it's like a scene straight out of the movies.

Security cameras were rolling on March 17, 2013, when prison guards could only watch as a helicopter hovered over the yard at the St.-Jerome Detention Centre near Montreal, Quebec.

After a rope was dangled from the helicopter, inmates Danny Provencal and Benjamin Hudon-Barbeau could be seen on video trying to grab hold unsuccessfully.

In footage from another camera, prison guards panned the yard and then caught Provencal and Hudon-Barbeau using the rope to scale an exterior wall. When they were more than halfway up the wall, a man exited the helicopter and tried to give them a hand. He failed.

Finally, the two men held onto the rope as the helicopter took off into the air. Cameras caught the men even knocking over a wall fixture before disappearing from the guards' view.

According to Canadian news reports, the helicopter eventually landed in a spot where a getaway car was waiting.

The video was released Tuesday by Canadian courts in connection with a trial for Hudon-Barbeau that was unrelated to the prison escape.

Canadian media reports said that Billi Beaudoin and Steven Mathieu Marchisio had hired the helicopter and then hijacked it at gunpoint. They then had the pilot fly the aircraft to the prison; the pilot was not injured. The four men were arrested hours after the escape and charged in connection with the hijacking and escape.

According to Canadian news reports, the guards in the prison did not carry guns.

"We have to evaluate who's on board the helicopter -- they were accomplices. Were they armed? We cannot intervene with inmates climbing a rope," Mathieu Lavoie, union president of Peace Officers in Correctional Services of Quebec, told Radio-Canada. according to CBC News.

All four men pleaded guilty to charges related to the hijacking and escape and were given jail time.

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