Attorney General's Report Shows Security Flaws Helped Michael El - WLNS TV 6 Lansing - Jackson | Your Local News Leader

Attorney General's Report Shows Security Flaws Helped Michael Elliot Escape

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(WLNS) – A 28-page, independent report released Monday by the Michigan attorney general’s office revealed serious security flaws in the Ionia Correctional Facility, and blamed technological and personnel failures for the Super Bowl Sunday escape of convicted killer Michael Elliot.

According to officials, those failures included a complete breakdown of the PIRAMID Microwave Alert System due to officer inattentiveness. This system uses microwave sensors to detect human intrusion, and was not working properly the day of Elliot’s escape.


The report also says there was a breakdown in video surveillance after an officer monitoring the feed failed to adhere to staffing policies.

Other failures included problems with the structural integrity of the fencing system, a failure of the E-Flex wire alarm system and inadequate prisoner count procedures.

Russ Marlan, a spokesman for the Michigan Department of Corrections, said his department is reviewing the report and will take the twelve recommendations made in the report into consideration. He also noted that many of those recommendations and findings mirrored an internal investigation done by the department earlier this year. That investigation has already resulted in multi-million dollar changes within the department. “
We've allocated $11 million this budget year to fund those security enhancements. We also have a project plan to spend more than $42 million on cameras and lighting,” said Marlan.

But both the attorney general and the Michigan Corrections Organization are calling for a few more improvements. Of the twelve recommendations made by the attorney general, the MCO says it strongly supports at least two. “One of the things that we take note of is something we've been arguing for a number of years now, and that's a reinstitution of the gun towers and the perimeter security vehicles,” said Mel Grieshaber, executive director of the Michigan Department of Corrections. “We think that those vehicles are a deterrent, and we believe the gun towers are as well."

To read the attorney general’s report in full, click here.
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