174 Haiti Convicts on the Run with Rifles After a Massive Prison Break

A massive manhunt has been launched in Haiti after most inmates at a prison escape after killing a guard and raiding the facility’s armory.

UN peacekeeping forces are helping the police in their attempt to round up some 174 prisoners who escaped the Arcahaie prison on Saturday.

Police have so far detained several people at checkpoints established in the vicinity of the prison. Eleven inmates were caught while trying to escape.

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Authorities said that as the prison’s some 266 inmates do not wear uniforms, distinguishing them from the general population is difficult.

Officials report that the mass break started when inmates forced their way into an area used by the guards, stealing at least five rifles among other weapons, and shooting one guard dead during the process.

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According to Haiti’s Justice Minister Camille Edouard Junior, one prisoner fell to his death while attempting to scale a wall.

Inmates’ sandals lay at the main gate of the Civil Prison in the coastal town of Arcahaiea, Haiti, Saturday, October 22, 2016, following a mass prison break. 

“One guard was killed during the incident,” he said. “Three prisoners were wounded, including one who died as a consequence of his wounds.”

“The government condemns in the strongest terms the incidents at Arcahaie civil prison, which was targeted on Saturday by a mutiny,” read a statement released by the Haitian government.

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Meanwhile, the US embassy in Haiti has issued a security message concerning “a violent prison break in Arcahaie,” urging its citizens to avoid the region.