‘Ripper’ Jayanandan had reportedly told two armed policemen, who once escorted him to court, to “watch out for themselves” for he would escape if he got a chance.
The police had categorised him a serial offender with an anti-social personality disorder, which manifested in multiple violent crimes in northern Kerala between 2002 and 2006.
In 2011, a district court in Ernakulam had sentenced him to rigorous imprisonment for life without “parole or leniency” for the murder of Elikutty, a resident of Vadekkakara. Like in the other crimes Jayanandan is accused of, including the double murder of Ramakrishnan and his wife, Devaki, at their house at Puthenvelikkara in Thrissur on October 2, 2006, profit through theft was apparently the suspect’s only motive. The court order notwithstanding, Jayanandan had apparently received much leniency at the Central Prison here, police investigators said.
The prison authorities detailed him to the relatively laid-back kitchen duty, which gave him sufficient free time to roam the prison’s precincts, including the banana plantation, from where he scaled the wall to make good his escape. His work also gave him access to garden and carpentry tools, perhaps including the hacksaw which he used to cut open the cell lock.
He made regular use of the payphone facility in the prison, but always fudged the numbers he entered in the contact register.
His calls seemed to have been unmonitored. The police believe that he could have contacted his wife and children, who are believed to be in Udhagamandalam in Tamil Nadu. Sailesh, a convict who occupied the cell opposite to that of Jayanandan told the police that he neither heard any “sound” nor noticed “anything amiss” till 12 a.m., when he fell asleep.
At 4.30 a.m., a jail warden noticed a pole left leaning against the wall and raised an alarm. The jailors on night watch checked all blocks and found the padlocks outside the cell doors intact.
They started a roll call and it was dawn when they realised that the ‘Ripper’ and his cellmate had broken out from the maximum security UT block adjacent to the Central Prison’s landmark entrance.