By Erin Holt
Nashville, TN (WATE/WSMV/CNN) - The lone death row inmate at the Tennessee Prison for Women is caught trying to put together an escape plan.
36-year-old Christa Pike is staying behind bars and her two alleged accomplices have been charged.
It's a plot made for a Hollywood movie. A death row inmate somehow convinces a prison guard and a man from New Jersey to help her get out of prison.
"Anytime there's a threat to one of our prisons, there's a threat to the public and we take this very seriously," said Dorinda Carter with the Tennessee Department of Corrections.
The exact escape plan is still being investigated by the Department of Corrections and the TBI, but sources say prison officials were tipped off early on.
"We do monitor phone calls, we do receive information from various sources and we investigate that information whenever we receive a tip or even the slightest possibility that there might be a threat to the prison," said Carter.
According to investigators, Donald Kohut somehow became acquainted with Pike and began frequently visiting her at the Tennessee Prison for Women.
It's Kohut, police say, who then began bribing Justin Heflin, a 23-year-old guard.
"There may have been some exchange of either gifts or money with the officer to assist in this plot," said Carter.
The plot was discovered in January, and according to the Department of Corrections, quickly stopped.
"We were able to take action fairly quickly we believe with assistance from TBI to prevent this threat from being carried out," said Carter.
Heflin faces a number of charges, including bribery and conspiracy to commit escape.
Pike has been disciplined by the prison system and will likely also face criminal charges.
She was sentenced to death in March of 1996 for murdering a 19-year-old woman on the campus of the University of Tennessee in 1995.
She sliced the victim hundreds of times with box cutters and a meat cleaver before finally beating her to death with a rock.
Pike is also serving time for attempting to murder a fellow inmate in 2004.