Brother of escaped inmate will serve no prison time

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William Hewett escaped from the Brunswick County jail in January. His brother, who was charged with his escape, has been sentenced to three years probation. Photo from escape video.
William Hewett  reportedly escaped from the Brunswick County jail in January. His brother, who was charged with aiding his escape, has been sentenced to three years’ probation. Photo from escape video, courtesy of the Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office.

A man who pleaded guilty to aiding the January escape of his brother from the Brunswick County Jail will serve three years of probation.

Curtis Hewett, 21, pleaded guilty in April to assisting in the escape of his brother, William Hewett, from the Brunswick County Jail on Jan. 29. He was given a prayer for judgment and was scheduled for sentencing at a later date.

Curtis Wayne Hewett
Curtis Wayne Hewett

On Tuesday, Senior Resident Superior Court Judge Ola Lewis sentenced Curtis Hewett to 6-17 months in prison, which was suspended, and ordered him to serve three years of supervised probation, according to Assistant District Attorney Jamie Turnage.

William Hewett, 23, escaped when he reportedly switched arm bands with Curtis Hewett, who was set to be bonded out of the Brunswick County Jail, according to Brunswick County Sheriff John Ingram. (WATCH ESCAPE VIDEO)

Authorities searched for William Hewett in a five-day manhunt, which spanned from Brunswick County to Fayetteville, Scotland County, Richmond County and South Carolina. On Feb. 3, sheriff’s deputies stormed what was described as a “family compound” off Trails End Drive in Southport, where they arrested William Earl Hewett and several family members.

Curtis Hewett remained in the Brunswick County Jail under a $750,000 secured bond at the time of his brother’s arrest.

William Hewett pleaded guilty to escaping from a county jail, felony fleeing to elude arrest and assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury, July 8 in Brunswick County Superior Court.

William Hewett was sentenced to  Photo from N.C. DOC.
William Hewett was sentenced two years in prison. Photo from N.C. DOC.

As part of his Alford plea–meaning he admits no guilt but acknowledges he will be sentenced as if he were guilty–charges of possession of a stolen vehicle, possession of marijuana, burning personal property and injury to personal property were dismissed. William Hewett was sentenced to more than two years in the N.C. Department of Corrections. He is scheduled to be released in September 2017.

Several other family members who were arrested and charged with assisting in William Hewett’s escape have pleaded guilty or had their charges dismissed, Turnage said.

The judge ordered Curtis Hewett not to have contact with William Hewett, among several other conditions of his probation, which include enrolling in a specialty treatment court and pay a $1,000 fine.

Attorney Dustin Sullivan represented Curtis Hewett in the case.

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