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Waterloo man sentenced to a year in prison after escape from halfway house

This news story was published on May 21, 2020.
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CEDAR RAPIDS – A Waterloo man who escaped from a Waterloo halfway house and spent over two weeks on the lam was sentenced to a year in federal prison on May 19, 2020.  Lonnel Porter, age 36, from Waterloo, Iowa, received the prison term after a bench trial and a January 16, 2020 verdict finding him guilty of escape from custody.

The evidence at trial and prior court proceedings showed that, in 2009, Porter was convicted in federal court of possessing a firearm as a felon after an incident wherein he displayed an assault-rifle during a neighborhood dispute.  At that time, Porter had prior convictions for burglary, domestic assault causing injury, and false imprisonment.  Porter was sentenced to nearly nine years in prison and three years of supervised release.  In 2012, while an inmate in federal prison, Porter was sentenced to an additional two years of prison after assaulting a correctional officer and causing injury to the officer.  When Porter was released from prison in 2019, he was required to spend time at a local halfway house, the Waterloo Residential Reentry Center (WRRC), with work-release privileges.  On September 16, 2019, about six weeks after he arrived at the WRRC, Porter signed out for his job, left the WRRC, and never returned.  When Porter’s probation officer called Porter on the telephone and instructed him to return to the WRRC, Porter refused to do so and would not reveal his location.  On October 2, 2019, the United States Marshal’s Service arrested Porter, and Porter was returned to prison for 14 months for violating the terms of his supervised release.

Porter was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Judge C.J. Williams.  Porter was sentenced to 12 months and one day of imprisonment.  This sentence is in addition to his prior 14 month term.  He must also serve a three-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  There is no parole in the federal system.  Porter is being held in the United States Marshal’s custody until he can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Tim Vavricek and was investigated by the United States Marshal’s Service.


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One Response to Waterloo man sentenced to a year in prison after escape from halfway house

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    Anonymous Reply Report comment

    May 22, 2020 at 6:06 am

    Lonnel, you big dummy.