Court documents reveal additional information about an inmate’s escape from prison in Enfield last month, including his trip to Burger King and his call to his mother claiming he has been released from prison and needed a ride. They also say the prison hung up on the inmate’s mother when she called the facility after suspecting something was wrong.
Jerry Mercado, 25, was serving a three-year sentence for burglary when he managed to escape from the Robinson Correctional Institution in Enfield on Sunday, Jan. 7.
Court documents say video footage revealed that he fled through an unlocked door of his dorm unit and scaled a fence to the roof at 11:56 a.m.
Police said it appeared that he stowed away under one of the two vehicles that were on the property.
Video from 17 minutes later showed Mercado walking down Shaker Road in prison-assigned attire – tan pants, a grey sweatshirt and white shoes , according to police.
More video showed Mercado inside the dining area of a Burger King in Enfield at 1 p.m., where a stranger bought Mercado lunch and allowed him to use a cell phone, according to court records.
Mercado called his mother and said he’d been released from prison and needed a ride from the Enfield Burger King, according to court records.
Mercado’s mother picked him up around 2 p.m., took him for a change of clothing and dropped him off in Hartford, according to police. But when he was getting out of the car, Mercado said something that made his mother suspicious. He said he loved her and had done something wrong, according to court records.
It was not until 3 p.m. that prison staff realized that Mercado was missing, according to the arrest warrant application.
Nearly an hour later, Mercado’s mother placed a call to the prison, but the person who answered the phone said there was an emergency at the facility and hung up before she could provide her son’s name, according to court records.
Other family members realized that Mercado was not due to be released until 2019 and that there were news reports of the escape.
Mercado’s mother then reached out to Hartford police at 5:24 p.m. to report the incident, according to police.
Days passed before U.S. Marshals found Mercado on Jan. 17 in the Atlanta suburb of Canton, Georgia and detained him. He has been brought back to Connecticut and charged with escape in the first degree and bond was set at $500,000.
He is due in court Tuesday.
Five Connecticut DOC employees were placed on administrative leave amid the investigation into the escape.