A list of memorable prison escapes when the inmate and those aiding them used a helicopter as part of the getaway plan. Often, helicopters are used when planning prison breaks, as their ability to take off vertically makes them perfect for getting in and out of a penitentiary area quickly. The list contains notable escapes from prisons, jails, correctional facilities and penitentiaries around the world, listed in chronological order.
The earliest helicopter prison break on the list dates back to August of 1971, when a man named Joel David Kaplan managed to get away from Mexico's Santa Martha Acatitla prison in a helicopter. Kaplan not only succeeded in getting away, but escaped to Guatemala permanently and later wrote a book about his experience.
A number of books, TV shows and films have included daring prison escapes involving helicopters. These include "Breakout" (loosely based on the Kaplan case), "Spy Game" and the TV series "Prison Break."
Santa Martha Acatitla August 19, 1971 in Mexico. Escapee Joel David Kaplan. Successful.