April 03, 2013

The Real MacGyver Facts

  • The Mark W. Stiles Unit was established in June 1993.

  • As of September 2011, the prison is capable of holding a capacity of up to 2,897 prisoners.

  • There have been other escapes from the Stiles Unit. In 2011, an inmate used a contraband cell phone to help coordinate his escape, but he was captured a few days later.

  • A 2011 analysis found that the Stiles Unit has one of Texas’s worst track records for prison staff members bringing in cell phones.

  • I-10, which Harold Laird used as his escape route, stretches from the Pacific Coast in California to the Atlantic Coast in Florida.

  • Through a Texas Department of Corrections program, about 6,000 offenders help staff agricultural projects throughout the state, including managing more than 24 types of crops and 10,000 heads of cattle.

  • The average inmate in the Texas prison system has about an eight grade education.

  • The Texas Department of Criminal Justice operates the nation’s second largest prison system.

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