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Archive for Friday, March 10, 2006

Inmate professes love, takes blame for escape

March 10, 2006

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Inmate John Manard, left, is followed by Safe Harbor Prison Dog Program President Toby Young as he walks his dog on the grounds of the Lansing Correctional Facility in Lansing, Kan., Dec, 8, 2005. Proclaiming his deep love for "an angel" and continuing to deny that he was a violent criminal, Manard said Wednesday, March 8, 2006, he was solely responsible for his Feb. 12, 2006, escape in a dog crate from this Kansas state prison. In a four-page letter to television station KCTV in Kansas City, Manard said he loved Young, a 48-year-old married mother of two, "more than life" and he planned the escape from Lansing Correctional Facility so he could be with her. KCTV said Manard's sister verified that the handwriting was her brother's.

Inmate John Manard, left, is followed by Safe Harbor Prison Dog Program President Toby Young as he walks his dog on the grounds of the Lansing Correctional Facility in Lansing, Kan., Dec, 8, 2005. Proclaiming his deep love for "an angel" and continuing to deny that he was a violent criminal, Manard said Wednesday, March 8, 2006, he was solely responsible for his Feb. 12, 2006, escape in a dog crate from this Kansas state prison. In a four-page letter to television station KCTV in Kansas City, Manard said he loved Young, a 48-year-old married mother of two, "more than life" and he planned the escape from Lansing Correctional Facility so he could be with her. KCTV said Manard's sister verified that the handwriting was her brother's.

— Proclaiming his deep love for "an angel" and continuing to deny that he was a violent criminal, John Manard said he was solely responsible for his escape in a dog crate from a Kansas prison.

In a four-page letter to television station KCTV in Kansas City, Manard said he loved Toby Young, a 48-year-old married mother of two, "more than life" and he planned the escape from Lansing Correctional Facility so he could be with her. KCTV said Manard's sister verified that the handwriting was her brother's.

"We have a fairytale love the size of infinity that's been lived by 2 real people," Manard wrote in the letter, which the TV station posted on its Web site. "She means more to me than my own life."

The convicted murderer said he was writing to "clear up some things" about Young's involvement in the Feb. 12 escape, when she drove a van used by the Safe Harbor Prison Dog program out of the prison while Manard, 27, was in a dog crate in the back.

After a highly publicized search, the two were arrested Feb. 24 near Chattanooga, Tenn., where they had rented a secluded cabin. They were caught shortly after coming out of a Barnes & Noble bookstore, and authorities said the cabin was full of things the two bought while on the run.

In the letter, Manard said Young planned to help him only by getting a lawyer, then was going to leave her husband to start over with Manard. He claimed Young did not know he was "in a box" inside a barrel in the back of the van when she drove away on Feb. 12. He said Young "almost wrecked the van" when he jumped out 10 minutes later.

Manard also claims Young at first wanted to go back and explain that the caper had been a mistake, but he convinced her that prison officials wouldn't be understanding. And after seeing her picture on the "America's Most Wanted" television show, she was "scared to death to leave me," he wrote.

Department of Corrections spokesman Bill Miskell said Thursday that investigators had sufficient evidence the day after the escape to receive warrants for Young's arrest for aiding Manard's escape.

And he reiterated earlier reports that prison officials believe Young bought a new car without her family's knowledge, took two guns from home, amassed thousands of dollars in cash and bought hair dye and an electric razor before the escape.

Young is charged with aiding and abetting aggravated escape, and harboring and concealing a felon. Her attorney did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment Thursday.

Manard was serving a life sentence for the 1996 murder of Donald England in the Kansas City suburb of Overland Park, Kan., during a carjacking.

In the letter, he said he was not the "stone-cold killer" he was being depicted as, claiming he merely drove the car during England's murder and "never hurt anyone then or before that day." He also said he did not plan to commit any more crimes after he escaped.

Johnson County Atty. Paul Morrison, who prosecuted Manard in England's death, was out of town Thursday.

The inmate concluded the letter by asking if Young was all right and pleading that she not be slandered anymore.

Comments

badger 8 years, 1 month ago

I don't think this will mitigate the consequences of her actions any.

It will, however, provide an interesting bit of debate if her attorney should try to sue for a change of venue based on the level of media exposure in the area.

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Aiko 8 years, 1 month ago

This has nothing to do with politics and the fact you do not like the leader of the country you live in. It is about a dumbass who broke out of jail and the lady who wanted to be young again and have her little boy toy. She is a freak and I feel bad for her husband and family, if anything...

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jackyboy 8 years, 1 month ago

This cretin needs about 300 more years in prison to organize his stupid stories and manipulative skills. A defense lawyer he's not.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 8 years, 1 month ago

I agree. His professions of love for Young are about as believable as Bush's professions of love for the Iraqi people.

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ljreader 8 years, 1 month ago

what a load- this guy should stick with murdering and prison escapes, and leave lying to the politicians.

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