Two inmates at a Virginia jail used “primitive tools” made from a toothbrush to dig a hole in their cell wall and bust out of the jail. They were caught a few hours later dining at IHOP.

On Monday night, the Newport News Jail annex discovered inmates John M. Garza, 37, and Arley V. Nemo, 43, were missing during a routine head count, the Newport News sheriff’s office reported in a news release.

A preliminary investigation of the escape discovered that the two men exploited a weakness in the prison’s walls and used “primitive-made tools” created from a toothbrush and metal object to access untied rebars between the walls. Once they reached the rebar, they used it to to further their escape, the statement said.

After escaping through the hole they dug in the cell wall, the inmates scaled the containment wall and made a run for it — to IHOP.

Authorities enlisted the public to help them track down the escapees, and the public delivered.

Garza and Nemo were reported to the authorities by fellow IHOP patrons in Hampton (about 8 miles northeast of the jail). Officials took the two men into custody. Charges related to the escape are still undetermined, said the news release.

Authorities thanked the citizens who reported the escapees’ location.

“I’m thankful for the citizens who observed Garza and Nemo at the IHOP and notified law enforcement. It reinforces what we always say ‘see something, say something,’” Newport News Sheriff Gabe Morgan said in the news release.

How common are prison breaks?

Escapes from prison are slowly decreasing. In 2000, there were 5,168 escapes from state and federal prisons in the U.S., while in 2019 there were 2,231, according to Statista.