Santini, famous for his extreme escapes that are performed without trickery, illusions, or gimmicked apparatus will attempt a record double escape at the Cornwall jail. The historic Cornwall jail, believed by many to be haunted, was built in 1833, opened in 1834, and operated as a correctional institution until 2002. At 1:00 PM Santini will first be searched by staff and the media to ensure he has no lock picks or devices on his person to aide in his escape and he will then be heavily restrained with manacles, shackles, a straitjacket, and triple locked into a cell built in 1983 and used up until the jail's closure in 2002. Santini will be given a time limit of 20 minutes to free himself from the restraints and the cell using only his wits, technical knowledge, physics, pain control techniques, and the restraints themselves as makeshift tools. To prove there is no trickery or gimmicked devices, Santini will attempt this escape in full view of the media.
If he is successful in the cell escape, Santini will then be marched outside the jail to where a replica of the gallows used to execute a total of 5 inmates at the jail from 1892 to 1954 stands in the courtyard. On the gallows Santini will be restrained the exact same types of belts, chains, and leg irons worn by the condemned in times past. He will be hooded and the noose will be fitted around his neck. In this helpless condition he will be given a time limit of 6 minutes in which to try and free himself, (the approx time it would have taken in times past to read the Death Warrant and recite prayers for the condemned before the trap was sprung). This escape, like the cell escape, will be performed in full view of the media. If he is successful, Santini will be the first person to cheat the gallows in Canadian history and the first escape artist worldwide to conquer such a unique, two tiered escape test.
Mike Lalonde, executive manager for Cornwall and Seaway Valley Tourism had this to say about Santini's impending double escape attempt at the jail, "We are very excited to have the famed escape artist Steve Santini attempt such a unique double escape at the historic Cornwall Jail." "Indeed, such a thing has never been previously attempted here or anywhere else in the world and we are very eager to see if he can actually accomplish it."
In 2003, Santini made national headlines when he freed himself in 13 minutes from the "Death Row" cell at the old Carleton County Gaol in Ottawa that once housed James Patrick Whellan who was executed at the Gaol for the assassination of Thomas D'arcy McGee, one of the founding fathers of Canadian Confederation. Likewise, Santini again made national media in July of 2009 with an escape from a Death Row "Condemned Cell" at the historic "En Prison" in Trois Rivieres, Quebec. Most recently, on Sept 24th, 2009, Santini escaped in just 5 minutes from 65 lbs of shackles, chains, and a Garrison Cell at the Canadian National Heritage UNESCO site of Fort Henry in Kingston, Ontario.
Steve Santini can be reached for pre escape interviews by contacting his manager Robert Baird at
416 887 2151 or 1 800 867 3281.