Warren County man who escaped after furlough for mother’s funeral gets 66 months in prison

Jason Fugate, 41, was sentenced to 66 months in prison for escaping while on jail furlough to attend his mother's funeral.
Caption
Jason Fugate, 41, was sentenced to 66 months in prison for escaping while on jail furlough to attend his mother's funeral.

Credit: Lawrence Budd

A Warren County man was sentenced on Tuesday to 66 months in prison for escaping while on jail furlough to attend his mother’s funeral.

Judge Donald Oda II sentenced Jason Fugate, 41, for escape and failing to report a change of address as required of sex offenders.

“You let me bury my mother, and I acted like a fool,” Fugate said during Tuesday’s sentencing in Warren County Common Pleas Court.

ExploreWarren Count inmate now fugitive

In May, authorities asked for help from the public in finding Fugate after he failed to return on May 9 after a a furlough granted by Oda so he could attend his mother’s funeral.

Inmates were being furloughed as part of COVID-19 measures by the Warren County Common Pleas Court, but Fugate’s temporary release was tied to the funeral, according to statements in court.

The jail booking photo for Jason Fugate, 41.  “You let me bury my mother and I acted like a fool,” Fugate said before being sentenced for escaping after a jail furlough to attend his mother's funeral.
  WARREN COUNTY JAIL
Caption
The jail booking photo for Jason Fugate, 41. “You let me bury my mother and I acted like a fool,” Fugate said before being sentenced for escaping after a jail furlough to attend his mother's funeral. WARREN COUNTY JAIL

Fugate was indicted on April 27 on the latest failure to report an address change charge and held on $10,000 bond until his furlough on May 5.

The failure to report charge stems from a Clinton County sex offense case.

It was Fugate’s second escape. In January 2010, he was sentenced to two years in prison for escape in Warren County, according to court records.

In August, Fugate pleaded guilty to the latest charges.

On Tuesday, he apologized and asked for mercy. Fugate gets credit for 180 days in jail.

His lawyer, Jennifer Coatney, asked that Fugate be sentenced to an intensive treatment program rather than prison, noting his mental health and drug addiction problems. Oda said he would consider early release for Fugate at some point.

“You’ve got to behave yourself while you’re in the joint,” Oda said.

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