Virginia Inmates Use Toothbrush To Dig Tunnel Out Of Jail And Head To IHOP

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On Monday (March 20), two Virginia inmates used a toothbrush to dig a tunnel out of jail and headed to a local IHOP.

John Garza, 37, and Arley Nemo, 43, were captured at the pancake restaurant chain’s location in Hampton, about seven miles away from the Newport News jail they escaped from in the early morning hours Tuesday (March 21), the Newport News Sheriff’s Office said in a press release. 

Garza and Nemo used “primitive-made tools constructed from a toothbrush and metal object” to break open their cell wall and access unsecured rebars between the walls. Then, they used the rebars to break a small hole in the wall and climbed through, the sheriff’s office added. 

“I extend my gratitude to the Newport News Police Department, the Hampton Police Department, and the James City County Police Department for their assistance in our attempt to recapture these inmates,” Sheriff Gabe Morgan said. “Moreover, I’m thankful for the citizens who observed Garza and Nemo at the IHOP and notified law enforcement. It reinforces what we always say ‘see something, say something.’”