TODAY   |  October 28, 2013

4 escape Oklahoma jail through trapdoor

A manhunt is underway in Oklahoma after four inmates escaped through a trapdoor above the shower area of their cell. They are described as “pretty crafty,” and the Caddo County sheriff warns they could be armed and dangerous. NBC’s Kerry Sanders reports.

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>>> want to turn to oklahoma now and a manhunt for mower agafour men who made a daring escape from jail. kerry sanders has the latest on that.

>> reporter: sounds like a plot from a movie. the sheriff here describes all four of these inmates as all very crafty because what they were able to do was to crawl through a hole and get through a spice above the ceiling of their jail cell and escaping to freedom. the four escaped convicts had been convicted of separate crimes including burglary, carrying concealed weapon and drug charges, but today they hatched a daring escape plan.

>> pretty crafty.

>> they are. that's all they got is time to think when they're in there.

>> reporter: authorities say very early sunday morning, the four men were in a shower area of their cell. they climbed up through a trap door above the shower head into a small area that houses the plumbing pipes. from there, they worked their way about 30 feet through the crawl space , break through the concrete wall into a utility room that led out through the jail.

>> this opening is 12 inches , 15 inches?

>> pretty close. they say it's tight.

>> reporter: the breakout follows the high profile case a week and a half ago of two convicted killers serving sentences in a florida prison who walked out using fauke documents. the incident has authorities reveeing the protocols for florida's prison system and now in oklahoma, they will be doing the same thing. but in the meantime, the sheriff says people in the county should be careful.

>> anybody fixing to go to prison, they're considered to be dangerous and possibly armed.

>> reporter: authorities here say they discovered just this weekend that several of those trap doors had not been sealed, so they were in the process of welding them shut and they got it all of them but two.