Fugitive Mom's Bid For Freedom Hits Legal Roadblock

A prosecutor says he opposes efforts to throw out a 10-year sentence given to a Carmel Valley mom before she escaped from a Michigan prison in 1976.

Saginaw County Prosecutor Mike Thomas said he found nothing legally defective with the punishment.

He said Susan LeFevre should at least serve about 3½ years in prison -- the same amount of time her co-defendant served before he was released.

LeFevre, 53, was a suburban mom in San Diego when she was captured earlier this year living under the alias Marie Walsh. She escaped from a state prison in suburban Detroit in 1976 after serving about 14 months for a heroin sale.

 "I'm opposing her motion that she get out immediately," Thomas said.   "If she were to be let out now, what does that say to the 51,000 people serving a sentence in the state of Michigan?" he said. "You don't have to serve your sentence if you manage to escape?"

 Thomas filed a response to LeFevre's request that her original sentence be thrown out for several reasons, including an ineffective defense lawyer back in the '70s. She also has complained about the harshness of the sentence for a first-time offender.

 Saginaw County Circuit Judge William Crane will settle the issue. A message seeking comment was left with her lawyer, Barbara Klimaszewski.

 In his court filing, Thomas said LeFevre could have pursued an appeal.  Instead, the escape seemed to reflect her "attitude that society's rules do not apply to her," the prosecutor said.
 LeFevre has pleaded guilty to the escape and been sentenced to probation. She's still behind bars on the drug sentence while her lawyers try to get it set aside.

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