MANHUNT: SC Inmate escaped maximum security prison

COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) -

Officials with the Department of Corrections say they are currently on the hunt for an inmate who escaped a South Carolina prison.

According to Corrections Department officials, Jimmy Causey, 46, escaped from Lieber Correctional Institution in Ridgeville just after 1:30 p.m. Wednesday. 

Details about the nature of his escape have not yet been revealed. Causey is described as weighing 177 pounds, 6'2" with short brown hair and blue eyes.

Causey is no stranger to escape. In fact, he and another inmate escaped the Broad River Correctional Institution in 2005 via a trash truck. They were both captured days later without incident at a Jasper County hotel.

Causey was sentenced to life in prison on kidnapping charges from 2002 in connection with invading the home of high-powered defense attorney Jack Swerling, who defended Causey in a previous case.

"He's a very vicious criminal," said Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott. "He's someone that we need to catch as soon as possible."

Swerling and his family were duct-taped and held at gunpoint.

Richland County investigators believed at the time Swerling was targeted because Causey and his accomplice believed him to have large sums of money. 

Swerling said he was notified of Causey's escape and has taken precautions along with his family. Area law enforcement also wants to caution the public that Causey could be armed and is considered dangerous.

"[Causey] will not hesitate in using force, including deadly force against any victim what so ever,” Lott added,  "so we just caution the community to be on the lookout for him." 

If you have any information about this incident, you are urged to contact Crimestoppers in any of the following ways: Call 1-888-CRIME SC (888-274-6372), Text TIPSC plus your tip info to CRIMES (274637), visit www.midlandscrimestoppers.com and email a tip. Your identity will be kept anonymous, and if your tip leads to an arrest, you could be eligible for a cash reward of up to $1,000.

Jimmy Causey (Source: SC Department of Corrections)
Laura Anderson

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