In the early morning hours of New Year’s Eve, 1977, Ted Bundy escaped through a poorly welded light fixture opening in the ceiling of his cell at the Garfield County Jail, where he was being held during the Caryn Campbell murder trial. This was the second time he had escaped captivity in one year, and he had purposefully lost about 30 pounds in order to squeeze his frame through the 12″ x 12″ hole. He then crawled through the ceiling compartment, broke through the drywall in the jailer’s closet, stole some clothes, and simply walked through the jail’s front door into the snowy Colorado night. He would not be caught again until February 15, 1978 in Pensacola, Florida.

On January 4, 1978, Detective Mike Fisher and FBI Special Agent David W. Yates made an inventory of the contents left behind in cell #5. A small silver flashlight originally from a care package sent by Carole Boone was also found in the ceiling above the jailer’s apartment closet. This is the handwritten inventory created by Detective Fisher and Special Agent Yates.

Bundy escape Garfield County Jail inventory items
Bundy’s cell after his escape. Photo courtesy Ross Dolan/Glenwood Springs Post-Independent via AP

Inventory Jail Cell Theodore Bundy

1. Brian MacNeil “T” shirt striped yellow-red-blue
2. Eldorado Brown Plaid overshirt
4. Brown fur vest
5. Brown cord pants
6. Smith Corona typewriter- shows dust
7. Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail/Thompson
8. Brown striped blanket
9. Brown piece from #8 has been cut out
10. one white plastic stand (blanket #8 and #6 had been kept on)
11. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas/Thompson
12. Rolling Stone– Dec. 77
13. Rolling Stone– Nov 77
14. Criminal Law Digest 1976 supplement
15. Esquire Mag Jan 78
16. Fed Rep. 2d.-326
17. Manila envelope- legal paper
18. Manila envelope from Boone + letter
19. File folder “Discovery Material Group B'”
20. File folder “Death Penalty Exclusionary Hearing”
21. Human Hair Analysis and Comparison
22. Code of Crim. P.
23. Similar transaction Main file & Melissa Smith
24. Similar transaction Exclusionary Hearing
25. Brown loafers
26. Brownish plaid shirt
27. Christmas tree (metal)
28. 5 ea. candy canes
29. Cardboard Box from C.A. Boone Nov 7, ’77
Contents of Box:
1 bag Veg. Protein Powder (Puget Communal Coop)
1 can cookies
1 dried pears
1 bag Soya protein
1 bag assorted nuts
1 elastic bandage
1 Men Speed Stick deodorant
1 pepper shaker
1 Bonjour soft cheese
1 Veg Protein Powder
1 Nail file/clipper
1 Soap
Candy Bar
–under the bunk–
30. 7 each legal pads
31. Cardboard Box Court File
32. ” ” ” “
33. How to Talk to God/ Smith
34. Crosswords for the Connoisseur/Preston
35. Understanding Media/ McLuhan
36. Legal Research/ Cohen
37. Tai-Pan/ Clavell
38. Pearl S Buck
39. Julian/ Vidal
40. The Gulag Archipelago/ Solzhenitsyn
41.-52. Book Titles, see below
53. The Colorado State Public Defenders’ Binder
54.-59. Book Titles, see below
60. Yamaha “T” shirt
61.-65. Book Titles, see below

66. Montecello- Plaid Shirt
67. Orange sock
68.-81. Book Titles, see below
82. Plastic Box file
2- Bowties
2- Soap
1- Cigar
2- 9 volt battery
1- small worn screwdriver
1- ear jack (?)
1-silver top (?) ointment
83.-116. Book Titles, see below
117. Sea wall posters
118. You Can Get There From Here/ Shirley MacClane
119. K-Mart Radio
120.-121. Book Titles, see below
122. Opened pack of cigarettes. Salem lights

1979 Print Advertisement Salem Lights Cigarettes Neon Sign | Etsy
1979 ad for Salem Lights

123. Unopened “”
124. Adhesive labels
125. Twinkle frost Xmas decoration cloth
126. 7 each colored egg Xmas tree ornaments
127. icicle Xmas tree
128. Box unsent Xmas cards
129. UNICEF Xmas cards
130. Rocky Mountain Police Supply Catalog
131. Go East Young Man/ Douglas
141. Playing cards
142. Ace (?) Hand ball (Spalding) can w/ pencils and pens
143. Shoe box envelopes postcards
144. Box Smead self adhesive file folder fastener (?)
145. Zen/ Pirsig
146. Sunflower seeds
147. Edge regular
148. Mennen after shave
149. ” ” “
150. Empty Planters peanuts
151. ” ” “
152. Gillette Right Guard
153. One brush
154. Chanel for Men
156. Vaseline
157. 16oz Yeast 500
158. High Protein Powder
150. 16oz Yeast 500
151. One cup
152. Multi vitamins
153. High C vitamin
154. Seniorplex (?)
155. 3 pine cones
156. one calendar 1978
157. chain necklace
158. wire hangers
159. one box
liquid mixer
organ meat
foot powder
peanut can- soap
vitamin bottles

A large collection of fiction, activity, self improvement, and law/forensics books, as well as an assortment of magazines and periodicals, were present in the cell and included in the inventory. Cover images of the abandoned reading materials can be seen below.

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