Family of couple killed by escapees sues AZ

OKLAHOMA - Survivors of an Oklahoma couple allegedly killed by two escaped prisoners from Arizona and an accomplice are suing the state of Arizona, state corrections officials and a private prison operator.

An attorney for the family of Gary and Linda Haas filed the lawsuit Thursday. The couple was killed Aug. 2 in New Mexico as they were traveling to Colorado for an annual camping trip.

Authorities have accused the prisoners who escaped on July 30 and an accomplice of killing the couple. The three were captured and are charged with carjacking and murder. 

"For months and months this prison was being run almost like a daycare. And because of that, these animals escaped the prison and did what they did," said family attorney Jacob Diesselhorst.

The lawsuit says the prisoners escaped from the Arizona State Prison at Kingman because of numerous security deficiencies, including a faulty perimeter alarm system and untrained prison personnel.  

"They had only been at the prison for a few weeks before they escaped. It didn't take long for them to pick up on all these glaring security errors," Diesselhorst said.

The state corrections department didn't return a calls seeking comment.
 


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