VIDEO: Woman, man arrested for helping inmates escape from Palo Alto courthouse

Kirk (left) and Hunt (right)

PALO ALTO (KRON) — Santa Clara County Sheriff’s deputies say the two inmates who escaped from custody in Palo Alto had help from the outside.

Deputies tell KRON4 it was a well-orchestrated escape. The two escapees are still at large.

The sheriff’s office they have arrested two people accused of aiding in the arrest.

An acquaintance of one of the fugitives, a woman identified as Marquita Kirk, has been arrested on suspicion of being an accomplice.

A 54-year-old man from East Palo Alto, Rene Hunt, was also arrested in relation to this case.

44-year-old Marquita Kirk
44-year-old Marquita Kirk

44-year-old Marquita Kirk, of Sunnyvale, was arrested and booked into the county jail Tuesday morning. She is suspected of renting and providing the U-Haul cargo van that was waiting for the two inmates after their daring escape from custody on Monday.

Deputies their relationship is not clear but that Kirk is affiliated with 46-year-old Tramel McClough, who escaped from the courthouse in Palo Alto, along with 47-year-old John Bivins.

Both men are from East Palo Alto.

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Deputies could not say if Kirk is connected to the first getaway vehicle that was abandoned before the two men switched into the U-Haul van.

It’s also not clear whether Kirk was present during the escape and what role she might have played in helping to orchestrate the plan.

As they were being escorted through a courthouse hallway by a bailiff after a hearing, Bivins and McClough somehow got free of their handcuffs and ankle chains, possibly using a key, which deputies say was found on a path near the courthouse.

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