Archive for Thursday, September 15, 2011

Cable TV series to feature 2006 Lansing prison break

Convicted murderer John Manard appears in 2007 in Leavenworth County District Court to plead guilty to charges related to his February 2006 escape from Lansing Correctional Facility. Manard's court-appointed attorney, Terry Lober, right, arranged the plea.

Convicted murderer John Manard appears in 2007 in Leavenworth County District Court to plead guilty to charges related to his February 2006 escape from Lansing Correctional Facility. Manard's court-appointed attorney, Terry Lober, right, arranged the plea.

September 15, 2011

A much-publicized 2006 prison break from the Lansing Correctional Facility will be featured next week during an episode of the cable television series, “I Escaped: Real Prison Breaks.”

The Investigation Discovery (channel 139 on Time-Warner Cable; channel 101 on Knology) series is featuring the Lansing prison break of convicted murderer John M. Manard. The show will air at 9 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 20.

According to court documents, on Feb. 12, 2006, Manard hid in a box inside a dog cage in the van of Toby Young, a volunteer heading the prison’s Safe Harbor Prison Dog program, and she drove him out of the prison. After the escape, they went to Young’s house, where Manard obtained a .38 caliber AMT pistol and a 9 mm Glock pistol. The two fled the state and were captured 12 days later in rural Tennessee after being spotted at a bookstore in Chattanooga.

Manard pleaded guilty in state court to charges related to the escape and also pleaded guilty in federal court to one count of unlawful possession of a firearm after a felony conviction. Young pleaded guilty in federal court to one count of giving a firearm to a convicted felon. She was sentenced to 27 months and released from federal custody in May 2008. She was discharged from state custody in February after completing her sentence for aiding and abetting aggravated escape and introducing contraband — a cellular phone — into the prison.

In Young’s plea in federal court, she admitted she met Manard in 2005 while he was an inmate at the Lansing prison and she was working for Safe Harbor. Manard was assigned to escort Young during her visits to the prison. Over time, they became friends. Young provided Manard with a cell phone and helped him devise a plan to escape.

According to the Kansas Department of Corrections Web site, Manard, now 32 years old, was returned to the Lansing prison shortly after his escape, then was transferred to the state prison at El Dorado before being placed in the custody of the Federal Bureau of Prisons from April 2008 to October 2009. He has since been returned to state custody at the El Dorado prison, where he continues to serve out his life term.

Tuesday’s “I Escaped: Real Prison Breaks” episode includes interviews with Young, as well as Lansing Warden Dave McKune, Tennessee Highway Patrol Troopers Ray Fowler and Gray Gibson, Deputy Ray Stewart of the U.S. Marshals Service and Dawn Bormann, a reporter with the Kansas City Star. 

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