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Teen sentenced for escape

May 28, 1998

A 17-year-old Clear Spring boy who escaped from the Juvenile Holdover Facility on Jonathan Street in Hagerstown last November was sentenced to six months in jail Tuesday in Washington County Circuit Court.

Charged as an adult, Shawn S. Morris already has served most of that sentence since he was caught 20 minutes after his escape, Maryland State Police reports said.

Judge John H. McDowell originally sentenced Morris to seven years in prison for the offense, suspending all but 18 months.

"Had there been any assault of any Department of Juvenile Justice worker, there would have been no chance for a six-month sentence," McDowell said.

Once released, Morris will be on probation for two years and will have to pay a $500 fine.

Morris, who was being held on a charge of vehicle theft when he escaped, left through an open door at the facility about 4:40 p.m. on Nov. 28, according to Trooper 1st Class Douglas Bird.

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The door was open while evening meals were being brought in, Bird said.

Hagerstown City Police found Morris about 5 p.m., not far from the facility, Bird said.

In April, Morris pleaded guilty to a prior vehicle theft and is on probation for that crime.

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