Hudson Valley Man Helped Fugitives Wanted For Attempted Murder
A Hudson Valley man admitted he helped two armed and dangerous fugitives who were wanted for attempted murder.
On Wednesday in Town of Shawangunk Justice Court, 55-year-old Richard Dana pleaded guilty to hindering prosecution for helping two fugitives wanted on attempted murder charges in Tennessee.
On June 20, 2017, the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Office in Tennessee issued an alert in connection with fugitives Jarret Cole Heitman and Makayla Danielle Stilwell, who were wanted for attempted murder, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated assault, reckless endangerment and aggravated robbery.
Heitman and Stilwell were said to be armed with an assault rifle and shotgun and were considered by police to be "armed and dangerous.” It was also believed that the pair could be headed towards the Hudson Valley.
Heitmann and Stilwell were later spotted in Pine Bush and may have been in the Bloomingburg area. They were also later seen just outside Orange County at the Walmart in Matamoras, P.A.
Both were part of Tennessee’s Top 10 Most Wanted list. They were being sought for allegedly kidnapping a woman and shooting a 34-year-old man in the chest in Tennessee.
On June 23, 2017, Dana found Heitmann and Stilwell hiding in a shed on his Pine Bush property.
Despite knowing that these fugitives were the subject of a multi-state manhunt, Dana admitted he provided them with food, shelter, pillows and a blanket.
Dana also allowed them to shower in his home, stay the night and drove them across state lines to a Walmart in Matamoras, P.A., providing them with a daypack, clothing, emergency pouches, blankets and a knife.
According to the Ulster County District Attorney's Office, besides the risk posed to the public, New York State Police estimates the man-hunt cost over $100,000 in taxpayer money.
Dana is scheduled to be sentenced on June 19.
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