HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Barret Paman says it wasn’t hard to break out of the Maui Community Correctional Center on April 14.
Th 31-year-old and another inmate, Troy Diego, left at about 1 a.m. — as two corrections officers apparently slept at their posts.
Paman told a Maui police detective after turning himself in that the two were “passed out cold.”
His attorney, John Parker, recorded the interview at the police station.
Paman says a termite-damaged door to the dorm was also easy to break through.
“How did you guys get past the lock to open the door?” the detective asked.
Paman replied, “We just went and pushed the bottom of the door open, wedge one broom inside and pop the thing right open.”
Paman says he was worried the noise was going to wake the guards, but it didn’t.
"When we went open the door, the thing went ‘paw’ and they still never come.”
He says he and Diego used their clothes to climb over the barbed wire fence. They then got onto the roof of another jail building and made their way to a nearby graveyard.
That’s when they ran through the neighborhood.
Paman was in MCCC accused of burglary, theft and gun crimes. He had been there about a month, unable to post bail.
Parker says Paman was scared inside the facility.
“He escaped not for the reason of getting away, he escaped for the reason that he felt his life was in danger, quite rightfully, he felt his life was in danger at MCCC because of the conditions there.”
Conditions are what other inmates said led to riots on March 11, causing millions of dollars in damage to two modules.
Paman turned himself in just hours after leaving, Diego was arrested the next day.
The Public Safety Department declined to comment on Paman’s claims that the guards were asleep, saying the investigation into the escape is ongoing.