Taylor receives sentence over 12 years, files appeal
Published 3:11 pm Friday, May 29, 2009
During a court appearance for sentencing in March, he escaped the Polk County Courthouse and was on the run for eight days. Taylor, in plain clothes and free of shackles, fled out the back door of the courtroom, jumped down the stairs and out the back of the courthouse into the woods. Polk County officers said after they apprehended Taylor that he spent much of his time in the woods in the Holbert&squo;s Cove area before returning to an acquaintance&squo;s home who notified the sheriff&squo;s office.
He was caught in a house off Fox Mountain Road in Columbus and sent to the N.C. Department of Corrections in Marion.
Taylor still faces charges of escaping a local jail and is scheduled to appear in Polk County District Court on June 3.
During superior court Tuesday, Taylor arrived handcuffed and shackled, guarded by department of corrections officers. Taylor&squo;s attorney, Rick Foster, requested on Tuesday that Taylor&squo;s sentencing be continued, but Judge Thornburg denied that request.
Assistant District Attorney Doug Mundy told Thornburg that in March, Taylor was convicted of possession of a firearm by a felon and the jury also found Taylor to be a habitual felon.
Taylor&squo;s charges of possession of a firearm stemmed from a June 28, 2008 incident when Taylor was on probation for fleeing to elude police. A probation officer went to Taylor&squo;s residence for a check and found spent .45 caliber shells in Taylor&squo;s pocket.
Mundy told Thornburg a small box containing marijuana residue, cigarette rolling papers and a .45 caliber pistol were also found at that time. Taylor claimed that the pistol was not his, but his father&squo;s.
The probation officer decided at the time not to arrest Taylor, but Taylor said he&squo;d run to California, ran into the house and swallowed some pills, grabbed a knife and ran into the woods. The probation officer chased him and after a short struggle, handcuffed him.
Prior to Taylor&squo;s sentencing Tuesday, he spoke on his behalf and said he didn&squo;t fight with the probation officer, that he is not a violent person and has never hit or yelled at anyone. He said he wished someone would have stuck up for him, but they were afraid of getting in trouble.
Taylor could face an additional sentence of several years for escaping.
Taylor was given credit for time he&squo;s served awaiting his sentencing and will stay at the Alexander Correctional Institution until the N.C. Court of Appeals decides how to proceed on&bsp; his sentencing appeal.