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Fugitive Calif. mom wants leniency

September 24, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
A California mother who escaped from prison 32 years ago is sentenced to probation. However, the judge says she is not a free woman. Susan LeFevre, 53, admits escaping from prison was a terrible thing to do, but she says she has turned her life around.

LeFevre was living under the alias "Marie Walsh." She was on the lam for more than 30 years, living in a posh San Diego neighborhood. LeFevre was raising three children with her husband of 23 years and they never knew she was using an assumed identity.

Susan LeFevre is now asking for leniency.

"I knew this was coming. I just didn't know it would be this terrible. Six months has been just unbelievable," said LeFevre in court on Wednesday.

LeFevre has been back in the Michigan state prison system since her capture in April. However, there is no doubt LeFevre desperately misses her husband and children, her friends and million-dollar home back in California.

LeFevre faced a Detroit judge on Wednesday. She was facing an escape charge that could have tacked five more years to the 10- to 20-year drug-dealing charge that sent her to prison back in 1975. LeFevre escaped, but she still wants to be vindicated.

"I wasn't involved in drug trafficking at all. I just was a recreational user," said LeFevre.

LeFevre's father lives in Saginaw. He is pleased that she is back in his life but wants her once and for all to be free.

"For the last six months that she's been found in San Diego, we were concerned. But, I think this was the first step towards letting her back to her family," said Al LeFevre, Susan's father.

Susan LeFevre has filed an appeal in hopes of reducing the drug charges. She wouldn't be eligible for parole until 2013. Probation on the escape charges was good news Wednesday morning.

"Ms. LeFevre, you probably have not slept a good night since this all happened. Do I feel sympathy for you? No. But in this case, the court sees no reason to give you any extra time," said Wayne County Circuit Judge David Groner.

A Michigan Department of Corrections spokesman says they can't negate her prison sentence even if they so wanted. It would send the wrong message to the 50,000 other prisoners in Michigan.

LeFevre has at least five more years before she has a chance for parole.

 

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