CLARKSBURG, W. Va. — A man who escaped from FCI Morgantown in April of last year has pleaded guilty to the crime.
Eugene Nicholas Cobbs entered the guilty plea to the escape charge in federal court in Clarksburg on Monday before U.S. District Judge Irene Keeley. Cobbs was sentenced to an additional 14 months in prison, served consecutively with his 13-year sentence with five year supervised release, and to pay a $100 special assessment.
He escaped from the facility after walking away from cleaning detail on April 10, 2013. From there, he rode a bus to Philadelphia and then made his way to Mexico with the help of an accomplice, Jamie Angel Clayton, 39. He used false identities and lived in multiple locations to remain elusive. Upon his arrest, he initially provided a fictitious name, but was later positively identified and deported by Mexican authorities in June.
Cobbs was convicted in 2010 for conspiracy to distribute cocaine and piloting an aircraft without a license. He was piloting the plane in 2004 when he crashed near the Wheeling-Ohio County Airport and immediately fled the scene. Authorities investigating the crash discovered 525 pounds of cocaine worth approximately $24 million. This was the largest amount of narcotics ever located in West Virginia at the time.
After he was not immediately arrested, he fled to Guadalajara, Mexico, where he lived under a false identity, avoiding arrest for four years before he was caught in Texas during 2008. After he was returned to the U.S. to face his charges, he was sentenced in May 2010 to serve more than 12 years in prison originally at FCI Fort Dix in New Jersey but was transferred to FCI Morgantown.
Cobbs requested a transfer to Fort Dix but the request was denied.
As for Cobbs’ accomplice, Clayton was indicted for aiding the escape, was arrested in May 2013 in New York and remains free on bond while the criminal case is pending.