Susan LeFevre was an escaped prisoner for more than 32 years, but she was never really free to work on the cause that she now plans to take up, says Detroit Free Press columnist Jeff Gerritt. LeFevre, 53, had a California dream life: a loving husband, three great children, and a suburban San Diego home worth maybe $1 million; she had a housekeeper. As a teenager in Michigan, she smoked pot almost daily and occasionally used heroin. She was a fugitive herself, having climbed a barbed wire fence in 1976 in Michigan, hopped in her grandfather’s waiting car and hitched a ride with a friend to Los Angeles.
LeFevre was a 19-year-old community college student in 1975 when she drew a 10-20 year sentence for selling three grams of heroin for $300 to an undercover cop. It was her first offense and, if committed under today’s sentencing guidelines, would probably mean probation. Now she is in prison in Michigan. After her release, LeFevre plans to start a Web site and foundation that will advocate for inmates. LeFevre won’t be eligible for parole until 2013. She is askng a judge today to vacate her sentence.