Based on a horrific true story, the film follows the infamous prison break of the savage Gary Tison and Randy Greenawalt. Tison was serving two consecutive life sentences for murder when, accompanied by Greenawalt and aided by Tison's sons Donny, Ray, and Ricky, he broke out of Arizona state prison in the summer of 1978. The two escapees left a trail of corpses in their wake as they and Tison's boys eluded law-enforcement pursuit across Arizona, Colorado, and New Mexico. A local sheriff, familiar with Tison’s ruthlessness, led the chilling manhunt which came to an end in a shoot-out near the Mexican border. Tison fled but his son Donny was killed in the gunfight. A few days later Tison died of exposure and dehydration in the desert where his body was later found. Tison’s sons Ray and Ricky, and Greenawalt were sent to death row.