Former guard to stand trial in jail escape

December 01, 1990|By Thom Loverro | Thom Loverro,Western Maryland Bureau of The Sun

CUMBERLAND -- An Allegany County District Court judge ordered former county jail guard Sandra Kay Beeman yesterday to stand trial on charges that she helped her lover, inmate Edgar Eugene Kerns, escape from the jail three months ago.

Mrs. Beeman, 46, appeared before Judge Paul J. Stakem in a preliminary hearing on charges that she helped Kerns and another inmate escape from prison Aug. 29. She is also charged with smuggling in hacksaw blades to the inmates as part of the escape.

Dressed in a blue blouse and dark pants, Mrs. Beeman did not say anything in the hearing. Her lawyer, Michael Noonan, asked that bond be reduced from the $500,000 figure set at an Oct. 31 bond hearing, but Judge Stakem refused.

Mrs. Beeman is being held in the Garrett County Jail.

Kerns, 29, the inmate for whom Mrs. Beeman has proclaimed love in newspaper reports, also appeared before Judge Stakem yesterday in a separate preliminary hearing and was ordered to stand trial on charges of escape and accepting contraband. His bond remains at $500,000, and he is being held at the Roxbury Correctional Institution, serving his sentence on the forgery and theft charges for which he was incarcerated before his escape.

Mrs. Beeman and Kerns were on the run until Oct. 18, when they were captured by the Hamilton-Wentworth Police Department at motel in Hamilton, Canada, after the managers of another motel where the pair had been staying saw their pictures on a segment on a television program, "Unsolved Mysteries."

Both Mrs. Beeman and Kerns face a maximum of 30 years in prison on the felony charges.

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