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Press Release

Three Indicted in April Prison Escape

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Texas

BEAUMONT, Texas – Three individuals, including two federal inmates, have been indicted in connection with an escape from a Federal Correctional Complex in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney John M. Bales today.

Todd Allen Hammer, 40, and Jason Wesley Tate, 44, both federal inmates housed in Beaumont, Texas, and Lorna Leslie, 55, of Sherman, Texas, were indicted by a federal grand jury on May 4, 2016, and charged with escaping from federal custody and conspiracy to escape from federal custody.

According to the indictment and information presented to the grand jury, on Apr. 17, 2012, Hammer was convicted of drug trafficking and firearms violations in the Sherman Division of the Eastern District of Texas and was serving his sentence at the Federal Prison Camp located at the Federal Correctional Complex in Beaumont, Texas.  On July 7, 2015, Tate was convicted of drug trafficking violations in the Western District of Texas and was also serving his sentence at the Camp.  On Apr. 9, 2016, Hammer and Tate are alleged to have escaped from the facility with the assistance of Leslie, Hammer’s girlfriend.  On Apr. 15, 2016, all three were captured by the U.S. Marshals Service in Dallas, Texas. 

            If convicted, they each face up to five years in federal prison.  The maximum statutory sentence prescribed by Congress is provided here for information purposes, as the sentencing will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors.  A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the U.S. Probation Office.

This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons and the U.S. Marshals Service and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John A. Craft.

An indictment is not evidence of guilt.  All defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Updated May 5, 2016