Mack Alford Officials: 'We're a secure facility'

By: Steven Powell Email
By: Steven Powell Email

Jason Bales disappeared early Monday morning - and hasn't surfaced since.

But while prison officials desperately hunt for the convicted killer, the public questions why a man sentenced to life without parole is serving his time in a medium security facility.

Becky Guffy, security and facilities operations manager, said they rank offenders on a point system.

"It covers everything from their age, to their crime," she said. "Categories carry a certain amount of points."

Guffy said Bales earned between seven and 12 points, which classifies as medium security.

"We house everything from hot check writers to murder one," she said.

Bales killed his girlfriend's mother, Stephany Glass, in 2006. Glass didn't like Bales dating her then 16-year-old daughter.

Bales strangled Glass and doused her body in acid, before burying her in a shallow grave.

Back in 2006, Bales' brother - David - said Jason often got violent.

"I'm still lying there at night, just staring into the darkness thinking about it. Thinking 'can my brother have really done something like this?' And you have to face reality. And the fact is that he did," David Bales said.

Prison officials are still investigating how Bales escaped, and say they can't release any information.

The prison has 1 guard for every 10 inmates. Guffy insists it's a secure facility.

"Offenders have 24 hours a day, seven days a week to find weaknesses," she said. "We do our very best to make sure that doesn't happen, but occasionally it does."

Authorities urge the public to contact law enforcement if they see anything suspicious. They say they're investigating every tip they get.


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