First of all, before you can start building boats, like Andy did, you should remember that this is the real world, a place where escaped convicts are hunted down like … well… this term didn’t really invent itself out of thin air. Second, most of the things written in this article have been seen before in movies like “The Shawshank Redemption”, “Escape from Alcatraz”, “The Great Escape” and “Papillon”.
10. You’re five minutes out of the sewage duct, it’s pouring outside, and there’s nobody around to hear you scream for joy. Don’t stick around too much! If you’re waiting for uncle Steve to come and pick you up, make sure he’s doing so a few miles away from the prison. If no one’s waiting for you, because you’re a menace to society, then you’d better avoid any nearby hotels, train stations, bus stops or bridges. Why? They’re called points of interest and usually that’s where the cops look for escaped inmates, like you, that’s why.
09. The fact that you’re still wearing that orange, blue, pink, or whatever color they give your outfit in prison, will not get you very far. As a general rule, uncle Sam gives you this fancy suit so that you stand out in the crowd. You don’t have to be a genius to know that everybody will recognize you due to the clothes you’re wearing. Also, the police will set up a couple of perimeters around the prison which are meant to contain the escaped convict, so you’d better avoid other people for a while and run like you’re on fire.
08. Chances are that you’re not as smart as Andy was, so I hope you didn’t spend the past six months watching paint dry. Most probably, you will be on foot, so a prime physical condition will help you get as far away as possible. Don’t forget that dogs will be on your tail the whole time and no matter how many rivers you cross, they will still track you down. Try to swim down the stream a couple of miles. That should buy you some extra time..
07. So you feel like going home to your mom? So is the police. By now they have already started talking to anyone who might have known you before you’ve escaped from prison. Everyone you knew in your life, before the escape, is now gone forever. I hope that you haven’t been running your mouth around, telling everyone what an awesome plan you have. Keep in mind that the fewer the people know about this, the better. From now on, you are on your own.
06. In 24hrs (if you’re lucky) your face will be all over the news. More to it, you’re exhausted, hungry and wet so I bet your moral is six feet under. Right now, all you need are some dry clothes and a decent source of proteins but whatever you do, try to keep a low profile. Don’t take more than you need, don’t hurt anybody in the process and for God’s sake, don’t spend too much time in one place. If you need to sleep, do so in the sewers or a hidden place.
05. Don’t even think about getting a weapon. Whether it’s a knife or a shotgun, weapons will only complicate things. Remember that your mission is not to fight back, but instead you should continue to run. Whether you get caught or not, adding extra charges to escaping the prison will probably get you an extra 20 years in a maximum security facility.
04. Don’t go directly to Mexico! What you see in the movies is wishful thinking. Nobody gets out of the country that easily and if you’re thinking about driving a car through those barriers, you’ve got another thing coming. We’re not in the wild west anymore and you should know that things have changed a little bit since you’ve been incarcerated. Everything from phones to computers and cars will bring you closer to the cops. Remember that technology is not your friend.
03. So you’ve managed to get away and finally you’ve rested more than 4 hours? Good! Don’t go spending everything in Vegas! What I mean to say by this is, don’t draw too much attention onto yourself. The fact that you haven’t been caught yet doesn’t mean they stopped looking for you. As I’ve told you before, it’s just a matter of time until they find you and widening that timeframe as much as possible, might be your best shot at being free.
02. You will need a new identity. Think of a name, think of a birthplace, think of a highschool girlfriend, in fact, try to create a totally different background for yourself and keep to that story. Don’t think about anything fancy that requires too much explaining to do. Princess Banana Rama, Manager at Microsoft will not do.
01. If you meet a cop, try to act natural. I know it sounds like I’m telling you to stop sweating while walking in the middle of the desert but eventually it will happen. Whether it’s in the first six hours since you’ve escaped or well after three years, nothing will give you away better than your own self.