WCAV-WVAW-WAHU | Charlottesville, Virginia | News

Attempted Jail-Breaker Sentenced 30 Years

By: Elizabeth Donatelli
By: Elizabeth Donatelli

August 16, 2005

The last of six inmates charged in a jail-break attempt was handed a guilty verdict and sentenced to 30 years in addition to the 10 he was already serving.

The courtroom was filled with added security, some of whom were strictly observers for Thomas Dudley's trial and sentencing.

Dudley plead guilty to attempted escape and was charged with two counts of assault and battery and 2 counts of abduction of two prison guards.

"Each one of them had flashes [during which] they thought they were going to die. And to be hog-tied and stuffed under a bunk with a sheet over your face to the point where the blood is matted on the sheet and they can't get it off of your face is horrific," said Commonwealth Attorney Jim Camblos. "The sentence was absolutely appropriate."

One of the two jail officials held hostage was a 26-year-old single dad, and the other a 73-year-old retired school teacher from New York.

"Jail guards need to be able to work in an environment without the threat of this sort of thing happening, and what the jury decided was an appropriate sentence for Mr. Dudley was absolutely appropriate," said Camblos.

The prosecution described Dudley as the "ring leader" or "co-ring leader" and asked for 38 years. The maximum was 50.

The judge will also sentence him for the attempted escape, which could tack on an extra 5 years. That sentencing will be on December 13th.


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