Courier staff writer
ALAMOSA — For a week of freedom with his family, Jacob Carson gave up a full year of his life.
The 22-year-old man escaped last November from the custody of the San Luis Valley Community Corrections Center, where he was staying after he was convicted of a 2011 offense.
On Thursday, that misdeed caught up with him. 12th Judicial District Chief Judge Pattie Swift sentenced Carson to an additional year in state prison, imposing the consecutive term on top of his underlying 2011 sentence.
In addition to the prison time, he will serve two years of mandatory parole, and will be required to pay additional court costs.
Carson could have faced steeper penalties for the crime. But under an agreement with the district attorney’s office, he pleaded guilty to a lesser offense of attempting to escape from custody, while prosecutors dismissed the original charge.
Despite the wording of the final plea, there was no question that Carson did, in fact, escape from the facility.
Deputy Public Defender Christopher Light told the court that Carson believed he was close to regression at the time he walked away from Community Corrections.
“He wanted to see his family before any potential Department of Corrections sentence (was imposed),” Light said.
Judge Swift said the logic behind his action did not make any sense to her.
“In order to see your family for a few days, you gave up a year of your life,” she said. “To me, it just doesn’t seem worth it.”
The judge suggested that Carson should make use of the additional time to decide where he really wants to go with his life.
Deputy District Attorney Mark Loy had no objections to the court’s sentence, which was in line with his recommendations.
Carson was previously arrested for felony menacing and summoned for criminal mischief and misdemeanor theft during a three-month period the year beforehand.
But he did not commit any offenses while he was out last November, Loy noted.