As the nation has now learned, on Thursday, August 31, a convicted murderer — also accused of murder in his home nation, Brazil — escaped from Chester County Prison.

The failure of our elected officials to ensure that policies and plans were in place to hold him in custody until he was transferred to state prison — or (my preference) extradited to Brazil — is inexcusable. This convicted murderer is here illegally and there is a warrant for his arrest in his native Brazil. 

It’s yet another consequence of politicians who are not serious about securing our border, nor checking to see who is coming into our country, where they go or what they do while here.

The failure to notify the public immediately or promptly share his photo is unconscionable. It underscores the lack of understanding of the importance of law enforcement — protecting the “good guys” from the “bad guys.”

Their failure of waiting until day five to ask the State Police for help put innocent citizens at risk, interrupted education, closed local businesses, and stretched local law enforcement beyond their limits. The impacts are real. Our safety is at risk. 

These failures are all the more compounded as we have now learned that this convicted murderer escaped by using the same escape plan and route that another inmate used in May of this year.

To be clear: this is not a case of “these things happen.” This very thing happened in May — escaping to the roof and leaping from building to building until outside the fence line. It should never have happened again. But it did, just three months later.

These things happen because too many Democrat politicians don’t take law enforcement and transparency seriously. They don’t believe in accountability or results. They believe in a cult-like ideology that is anti-police and pro-criminal.

They don’t see law enforcement as being focused on public safety. Too many believe that police are the problem. That we need to “understand” the criminals. They are willing to risk our safety just to promote their ideology.

De-fund the police. Allow police officers to be personally sued by the people they are charged with arresting. Give those charged and convicted of violent crimes to get a second or third or fourth chance. No cash bail. 

Democrat politicians don’t want to secure our border because of a laundry list of reasons, rationales and excuses, some even wrapped in cult-like chants of social justice. 

All the stuff they wonder and muse about at left-wing rallies, in social media and in their central-air conditioned dorm rooms, while they sip caramel macchiatos. All that stuff, they’ve put into practice in Portland, Philadelphia, and now in West Chester.

There are rumors of staffing issues at the prison. Police departments across Chester County have shortages. Do we really have to wonder why? Actions, policies, and rhetoric have consequences. Politicians yell and write about how police are the problem, and this is the result.

For too long, too many in the suburbs, including my own Chester County, have sat back and allowed this insanity to go unchecked. Some voters were angry at the GOP or President Trump. Some prioritized virtue-signaling issues, or went along with the new crowd. As a result, Chester County voters have given almost unlimited, unchecked power to Democrats from Devon to Kennett Square. 

Some voters have seen the changes in our culture and law enforcement—and, while troubled, saw them as issues in far-away Portland, in Los Angeles, or in New York City. Some suburban voters saw the problems in our own Philadelphia, yet assumed that they were “Philadelphia problems” caused by Philadelphia politicians’ policies.

What too many didn’t recognize is that many Chester County Democrats were saying the same things, attending the same rallies and cheering on their ideological brethren in Portland, LA and Philadelphia and in social media posts. And they’ve been voting for those left-wing policies in Washington, Harrisburg and bringing them to West Chester and now impacting Kennett Square, Chadds Ford, and all of Chester County.

Sooner or later, suburban voters have to recognize that too many local Democrats have the same priorities as those left-wing politicians they see on TV and social media. They do not focus on outcomes or impacts. To them, politics is about ideology, intentions and feelings.

This latest failure was not “one of those things.” It’s a result of years of changes in priorities and policies led by Democrats. Actions have consequences. Bad actions — bad policies — have very bad consequences. Time to think about the consequences, who’s responsible, and how to respond. 

The current County Commissioners Chair and Vice Chair — who appoint the prison warden and oversee the prison — want to be re-elected this November. 

The District Attorney — the “chief law enforcement officer” in the county — wants to be elected judge this November.

The Sheriff — whose primary job is managing the transport and care of prisoners — wants to be elected judge this November.

Chester County voters have been moving away from the GOP and embracing or tolerating the far-left lurch of our local governments and our schools, with damaging consequences. 

Do you trust this crowd with your family’s safety?

Guy Ciarrocchi formerly served as a Deputy Attorney General for Pennsylvania. He is a Fellow with the Commonwealth Foundation; and writes for Broad+Liberty and RealClear Pennsylvania. Follow him at @PaSuburbsGuy.

38 thoughts on “Guy Ciarrocchi: This time, Democrats’ law enforcement failures hit home”

  1. Here, I’ll give you an “-ic” for free for your propaganda. Maybe the guy your cult follows shouldn’t have let this murderer into the country to begin with.

    1. aren’t you the same person who persecuted President Trump for tightening up the border, and reminding America that it’s the “Bad Hombre’s, Rapists and murderers who enter illegally while good folks go through the proper process”? You can’t have it both ways. You’re such a weak minded shill. Who did you blame for the world’s problems before there was Donald Trump?

  2. And he is still out there folks! They have not caught him yet. Make sure you lock your doors and get ready to defend your home. This murdering little weasel could bring about Delco’s next lockdown. If and when they do catch him, and I sincerely hope they do, you can bet your boots that Soros-bought DA Jack Stollsteimer and his old pal Gov Josh Shapiro, will steal the limelight and take credit for it. Will this get Jack the much coveted job of PA AG? Or will Josh throw Jack under the bus, like he did the poor school children. Hold onto your hats!

  3. DA Deb Ryan is the one who prosecuted this guy and got him a life sentence in the first place. I’d hardly say she’s soft on crime.

  4. This is a terrible take. Its not the dems or the GOPs fault, its the fact that we let the prison construction firms do whatever they want without oversight. Then we end up with buildings that have flaws anyone familiar with jackie chan movies can exploit.

    You can point fingers all day but both parties have signed off on the prison industrial complex since GW Bush.
    You need to get real and stop shouting at the sky over nothing.

    1. This is typical scaremongering from the right. These pieces are laughable.

      I am a person in the middle, who has voted both ways an equal number of times in my life. I mostly vote left these days, because of garbage like this. At some point, the GOP is going to get their head out of their asses and have policy positions not predicated on hate and fear. When they do, I will vote for them again. Until then, they need to purge themselves of politicians who stand behind garbage, like this article…

      1. Based on your post denigrating Republicans, apparently you approve of the Democrats who, led by Biden, immediately rescinded all of President Trump’s illegal alien reforms. Since Biden and the Democrats have been in office, over 6 million illegal aliens have entered our country and roam it with impunity. To add insult to injury, this administration not only encourages illegal aliens to invade our country, they reward them financially for their assistance in allowing the Democrats to turn the U.S. into a third world country. You confuse hate and fear with measures prompted by patriotism and our love and respect for sovereignty.

    2. So, Adam, basically we should roll over and take it from the Uniparty, since they are all for open borders and corruption in government contracting. Surely closing the border, or extraditing illegals who commit crimes both entering and while in our country would do nothing to solve the problem. It’s not like elites are openly talking about replacing the native-born population or anything. Got it, I’ll get back to my grilling and never worry about politics again /s.

      BLM street criminals burn down 100 cities, and they’re celebrated as heroes.

      Antifa sex offenders attack a 17-year-old, the 17-year-old is prosecuted for defending himself.

      Meanwhile, guys who weren’t even in DC on January 6 are getting 22 years for what happened that day.

      Yet over 5.5 million illegals enter under Biden with no consequences and instant benefits.

      This isn’t a double standard. We’re under attack. Wake the F up.

        1. Nothing Normie Norm said was even remotely true? Please back up YOUR statement with facts and logical arguments.

        2. I would strongly recommend you spend a half hour away from the mainstream media propaganda and do your own research so that you never again appear so ignorant.

      1. Biden has deported more illegals than Donald Trump, and there have been more seizures of contraband at the border under Biden than under Trump. Remind me how Trump did a better job at securing the border?

        1. Yeah, tell new York, Arizona, Texas, California, Florida how many illegals deported! Remember the illegal kids fed before our own when the baby food was contaminated. How many veterans kicked out on the streets, and hotels, parks, community centers no longer usable by those who actually paid for them? Trump would have secured the border had the dems worked with him. We already had immigration laws on the books. Not followed. Now we have rampant criminals and filth and disease in our major cities. Martha’s Vinyard episode typical of wealthy democrats, not in their neighborhood! Biden is so senile he probably can’t close his bathroom door!

    3. It’s sad that none of your respondents below follow the news. Hopefully one of these days they’ll move on from the propaganda news they’ve been consuming.
      Burning down 100 cities does sound exaggerated but fires started in 100? I could see that
      17-year-old attacked by Antifa and prosecuted for defending himself? Check
      Sentenced for Jan 6th “crimes” while not even being there? Check
      5 million border crossings? The news won’t mention “5 million” because it sounds bad. They just assume you’re terrible at math, and so far, they are right. Check

      1. Sure thing. Tucker has proven over and over to be a reliable source. Just as reliable as Guy, with his own column citing “rumors of staffing shortages.” Excellent reporting.

        1. Staffing issues are high on the prison board’s list of corrective actions at the facility. As of Wednesday, of the total of 301 positions at the prison, there are currently 71 vacancies, among them 52 of the 198 Correctional Officer I positions. Holland told the board members [September 2023] that he hopes to have the number of vacancies at the prison reduced to 20 within the next 12 months.
          An official with an independent, volunteer organization that studies conditions at local prisons said Thursday that high vacancy numbers at those local prison facilities have a detrimental impact on the services that are delivered, although she stressed that she had no first-hand knowledge of working issues at the Chester County Prison.
          “Short staffing is a vicious cycle,” said Claire Shubik-Richards, executive director of the Pennsylvania Prison Society in an email. “It necessitates overtime, which makes existing staff want to leave.
          “In most facilities, a staffing crisis of this magnitude degrades the health, safety, and dignity of staff and people in custody — meals are served late leaving confined people hungry, delays in accessing medical care leave confined people sick and in pain,” she said. “Programming is almost always stopped. The security of staff and inmates can be placed at risk.
          “Whoever takes the helm of the Chester County Prison needs to be a visionary who has the backing of county leadership and can tackle staff morale, depleted programming, and a host of other issues,” Shubik-Richards said. “There is no quick fix to a problem the size of Chester County’s.”

  5. “These things happen because too many Democrat politicians don’t take law enforcement and transparency seriously. They don’t believe in accountability or results. They believe in a cult-like ideology that is anti-police and pro-criminal.”


    YOUR cult leader is facing 91 felonies — while Republicans in GA and DC are both interfering with THAT prosecution — amidst Republicans proposing to dismantle the DOJ and FBI. Who are you kidding?

    1. Please stop. Philly has voted democratic for 70 yrs.
      Crime has just gotten worse and the city fabric destroyed
      by democratic politicians and their inept policies.

      Are you OK with neighborhoods being war zones?
      Because by voting democratic in this recent election
      you are saying you are. Its sickening

  6. This is the kind of writing we can expect from a brain turned to mush by years of republican indoctrination. Just a rambling mess of talking points having nothing to do with the issue. Who is to blame for a prisoner crawling up a wall like spiderman? Democrats “cult-like” “pro-criminal” ideology (of course no specifics are given in this “article”), weak borders (of course, no discussion of how this inmate actually entered the country), “De-fund the police” (as if we needed more proof that this screed is nothing more than recycled talking points, the author thinks this phrase is a stand-alone sentence), the end of cash bail (cavalcante was already convicted, bail is completely irrelevant), or even undergraduates enjoying air conditioning and caramel macchiatos (if America’s dorms were 20 degrees warmer and our teenagers would only drink their coffee black, cavalcante never would have had the guts to make this escape). I’m pretty sure these are exactly the same issues that were cited when we lived through the national tragedy of obama wearing his tan suit. Then we get to the last few paragraphs where the true purpose of the piece becomes clear. The author simply wants a bunch of local politicians with no actual connection to these events to be voted out. It’s rare that a piece of writing can achieve such equality in terms of dishonesty in its purpose and abysmal quality, but this piece manages it admirably. Broad and Liberty should be embarrassed to have published it and The Commonwealth Foundation should be embarrassed to be associated with this clown.

  7. Talk about bad takes. Did the writer personally call the guard (who had a bad moment or two and failed to eyeball Cavalcante on the roof) to verify he was a Portland-styled anarchic leftist?
    One wily convict with good parkour skills is suddenly an indictment of a Chesco government freed just in time from a wave of MAGA cultists actively trying to usurp our democracy?
    Prisoners have periodically escaped in the county regardless of who’s in power at any particular time. It happened in West Whiteland when I was a kid and the GOP held us in its gerrymandered death-grip and it’ll happen again. The snowflakery is strong on the right.

  8. Fact: Deb Ryan has been a prosecutor for 20 years and put countless violent criminals behind bars. Crime in Chesco is down 10%. Guy’s contribution has been saying “back the blue” on FB

    1. lol. And don’t forget his support for a party that wants to defund federal law enforcement agencies and pardon a bunch of thugs who violently stormed and looted our capitol, beating cops on their way in.

  9. Didn’t the previous president’s party hold Senate and House majorities for 4 years ? Did meaningful immigration policies get enacted during that watch ?

      1. True. And I wish I could edit my other comment to correct that it was during the TWO years (2017 to be exact) that the GOP controlled the white house, Senate, House, and SCOTUS, that this man entered the country legally on a plane (not at the border). My bad.

    1. Not only that but it was DURING THOSE 4 YEARS that this man entered the country… legally…

      I’ve found that it’s useless to bring up facts to cult members though. They simply don’t matter.

  10. I’m not going to beat the dead horse on this one. The previous comments have already raked Guy through the coals.
    I’ll just agree that this is another less than insightful post by someone who is clearly out of touch with things, trying to politicize things and avoiding the hard issues in politics.

    1. So, just to be clear to all opposition to Guy’s article… dems actually openly stated positions of being soft on crime via their platforms and actions – see gun prosecutions, refusal to prosecute thefts less than $500, etc- and looked the other way while encouraging BLM riots that decimated neighborhoods, and no one thinks there is a connection to increase in these crimes?

      For those who want to take snap shots of crime statistics, do you feel safer in Philadelphia and many other major urban areas where dems run the show with other far left policies?

      Stating this escape is not indicative of larger issues in dems positions on crime is fair. Believing dems have not been anti police or permissive of anarchistic behavior is willfully ignorant.

      Many of our dem elected officials in chesco are holding on to not lose control to the far left who actually push these policies. To Guy’s point, someone needs to be held accountable. This murderer shouldn’t be here and we should be handling it better.

      Stop blaming Trump. He isn’t going to win the nomination and he’s not President anymore. People voted against him and it’s pretty lazy to keep dragging his name into every political debate as if it’s an argument relevant to today.

      1. This man came to the US LEGALLY IN 2017! Who was president then? Who controlled the Senate and House? Who was setting all the “tough on border” policies when he entered?

  11. So an inmate back in May crab-walked his way to the prison roof in a poorly engineered spot of the facility and “nearly” escaped… and just three months later, another prisoner does the same exact thing in the same exact spot and successfully escapes?!?

    What kind of FOOLS run this facility?

    1. All right, listen up ladies and gentlemen and Gen Zers, our fugitive has been on the run for 11 days. Average foot speed (and a stolen Dairy van), over uneven ground, barring injuries, is 4 to 80 miles per hour. That gives us a radius of… many miles. What I want from each and every one of you is a hard-target search of every gas station, residence, warehouse, farmhouse, henhouse, outhouse and doghouse in that undetermined area. Your fugitive’s name is Danelo Souza Cavalcante. Go get him/her – we don’t see gender.

  12. I think it’s sad the the far right has to politicize everything, especially so disingenuously, just to win points with their radical base.

    1) This man came to the US LEGALLY IN 2017!!!!!! Who was president then? Who controlled the Senate and House? Who was setting all the “tough on border” policies?
    Oh let’s not bother with inconvenient facts.

    2)”These things happen because too many Democrat politicians don’t take law enforcement and transparency seriously.”

    Bahahaha, this is just too rich coming from the folks who want to defund federal police and pardon a bunch of lawless violent thugs who smashed their way into the US Capitol, smeared their feces on its walls, looted it, bashed cops heads in with fire extinguishers, and dragged them face first down stairs.

    Give me a freaking break.

  13. “These things happen because too many Democrat politicians…”

    I agree with you all the way up to this sentence and I stopped reading.

    Chester County law enforcement is not underfunded. It’s probably a little heavy both in the budget and the waistline. Walk into the Justice Center. How many bears do you need to protect the porridge?

    All those affluent folks, both Democrat and Republican, in Chadds Ford, down the Route 52 corridor, and elsewhere around the county would never allow underfunding to happen. Private property is still respected amongst our affluent, probably more for privacy than for accumulating wealth, and they know law enforcement will be there to protect their interests.

    Chester County law enforcement became more symbolic of the success of Chester County than as a law enforcement agency. They have all the swat gear and the shiny sheriff uniforms. I compare them to the ceremonial King’s Guards at Buckingham. Chester County law enforcement did well to protect Chester County’s royalty around Longwood and the horse country where all those old-monied, Main Line emigres live.

    1. The King’s Guards’ duties at Buckingham Palace and other Royal Palaces are only a temporary duty assignment for members of this storied unit. It is not a permanent assignment. Only the best of the best Guardsmen and Guardswoman are selected for this coveted assignment. They actually return to their combat duties after their tours of duty at the royal palaces are completed. Many members of these Units have served in combat roles in Afghanistan before or after their assignments guarding the Royal Palaces. Accordingly, your analogy is completely incorrect.

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