A Fannin County woman has been sentenced to prison after pleading guilty to escaping from a Commerce Police Department officer earlier this year.

A charge of aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon filed against Stephanie Ann Johnson Pruitt, in connection with an alleged armed hold-up in Commerce in April, was dropped after the victim was unable to be contacted. However, Pruitt admitted to taking part in the offense as part of a plea bargain arrangement.

Pruitt, 41, of Ladonia, entered a guilty plea Tuesday to one count of felony escape, for fleeing from a Commerce Police Department officer in May.

Pruitt was sentenced to 20 years in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice-Institutional Division. Felony escape typically carries a 10-year maximum sentence upon conviction.

But Pruitt’s potential punishment was upgraded to 20 years due to her prior criminal record and because she admitted to, but did not plead guilty in connection with, the armed hold-up and a charge of possession of a controlled substance.

Pruitt was alleged in the aggravated robbery indictment to have used a knife to threaten a female victim on April 18, before stealing money.

Regarding the escape charge, a complaint filed by the Commerce Police Department as part of court records indicates that on May 10, Pruitt had been taken into custody on a charge of possession of a controlled substance.

After pulling up to the Commerce City Hall, a police officer opened the back door of the patrol car where Pruitt was being held, then Pruitt allegedly ran from the scene. Pruitt was said to have left her shoes and a hairpiece in the back seat of the vehicle.

The indictments also indicated Pruitt had five prior felony convictions, including three for burglary, one for escape and one for failure to stop and render assistance.

Trending Video

Recommended for you