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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Columbia

Wednesday, November 28, 2018

District Man Sentenced to 27 Months in Prison for Escaping from Halfway House in Southeast Washington

Defendant Later Re-Arrested on Gun and Drug Charges

            WASHINGTON – Lonniel Peterson Jr., 28, of Washington, D.C., has been sentenced to 27 months in prison after pleading guilty to escaping from a halfway house in the District of Columbia, announced U.S. Attorney Jessie K. Liu and Robert Turner, United States Marshal for the District of Columbia.   Peterson pled guilty to the escape charge in October 2018 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. He was sentenced on Nov. 27, 2018, by the Honorable Timothy J. Kelly. Following his prison term, he will be placed on two years of supervised release.

            Peterson was among two defendant to be sentenced this week as a result of ongoing efforts of the U.S. Marshals Service and the U.S. Attorney’s Office to arrest violent offenders who escape from halfway houses. In the other case, a federal judge sentenced Daquan Jackson, 22, of Washington, D.C., to a 33-month prison term for a similar escape.

            In 2017, the U.S. Marshals Service requested the assistance of the U.S. Attorney’s Office with the investigation, prosecution, and disposition of an increased number of escape cases. The escapees were under the supervision of the Federal Bureau of Prisons and were afforded an opportunity to complete the final portion of their sentences at halfway houses to assist in their reentry to the community. To date, the effort has led to 23 felony convictions of defendants who failed to report or absconded from the Hope Village Halfway House in Southeast Washington.

            According to court documents, Peterson was at Hope Village serving the remainder of a five-year sentence from a 2013 conviction in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia for assault to intent to kill. He began serving that sentence at the Federal Correctional Facility-Schuylkill in Minersville, Pa. On April 4, 2017, he was furloughed to serve the remainder of his sentence at Hope Village. On June 20, 2017, he left Hope Village without authorization and never returned.

            Peterson was re-arrested on June 13, 2018 by the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD). According to court filings, Peterson was arrested with 29 blue bags containing suspected crack cocaine and a 9mm semi-automatic pistol. He still faces firearms and narcotics charges in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia stemming from that arrest.

            In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Liu and Marshal Turner commended the work of those who investigated the case. They also cited the efforts of those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, including Assistant U.S. Attorney Gregory Rosen, who prosecuted the matter with the assistance of Assistant U.S. Attorney Kevin L. Rosenberg of the Violent Crime and Narcotics Trafficking Section.

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 
Updated November 28, 2018