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Foiled escape attempt at Nowra prison​

Issued: Wednesday 24 May 2016​

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Authorities have praised staff who foiled an escape bid at South Coast Correctional Centre (Nowra) yesterday morning.

At about 4.10am on 23 May, staff watching cameras in the monitor room observed a vehicle in the visitors' car park. The car's lights were flashed several times in the direction of the prison.  The two female occupants of the vehicle were detained and the police called. The women allegedly admitted they were there to collect two inmates who intended to escape.

​Staff searched the minimum security section of the prison adjacent to the car park. A 20 metre rope made of sheets, and a 10 metre electrical cord, were found concealed in a garbage bin in a common area inside the accommodation unit.

pictures show rope made of sheets found  Pictured: rope made of sheets ​

"I commend staff for their prompt and effective actions," said Corrective Services NSW Commissioner Peter Severin. "The safety of our community depends on custodial officers such as these."

An investigation is underway into the planned escape and how the two inmates suspected of being involved intended to break out of their secure accommodation unit to reach the perimeter fence. The two inmates have been segregated in the maximum security section of the prison.

Corrections Minister David Elliott praised the officers, saying, "I commend staff for their vigilance and quick action, at a time of the night when most of us are sound asleep in our beds."

The Minister also praised Security Operations Group staff who, in a separate and unrelated incident at the same prison on Sunday (22 May), found 927 grams of marijuana in a visitors' vehicle in the car park. The discovery occurred after a drug sniffer dog detected traces of marijuana on the vehicle's occupants during a routine visitor search. One of the occupants has been charged with drug offences. It is understood there was no intention to introduce the marijuana into the prison itself.

almost one kilo of marijuana found in a visitor’s carPictured: almost one kilo of marijuana found in a visitor’s car ​