CLEARFIELD – A DuBois man will be spending up to seven years in state prison for various crimes including trying to escape from the county jail and unlawfully possessing a firearm.
Joshua Michael Franklin, 37, pleaded guilty in a total of five cases during sentencing court Monday.
For felony firearm not to be carried without a license, he was sentenced to 35 months to seven years in state prison by President Judge Fredric J. Ammerman.
In the other cases, he was given concurrent sentences for felony escape; misdemeanor flight to avoid apprehension and recklessly endangering another person; misdemeanor criminal mischief and criminal trespass; and possession of drug paraphernalia.
The firearm charges stem from a traffic stop in October in DuBois City.
The criminal complaint details why the officer decided to stop the uninspected vehicle that Franklin was driving after he saw it was speeding.
In the vehicle, police could see various items of drug paraphernalia. After receiving permission to search the car, they found a rifle with a scope. Because Franklin was previously convicted on a burglary charge, he is not permitted to have a firearm.
According to the affidavit in the fleeing case, on Dec. 12, police waited for Franklin, who had active warrants, to return to a residence on Arminta Street.
After he was spotted driving by, the officer activated his emergency lights for a traffic stop. The vehicle did not stop immediately but once arriving at that address, it did stop and two female passengers got out.
When the officer told them to get back in the vehicle, they said the driver was going “to take off.” As the officer walked toward the car, Franklin stuck his head out the window and looked at him before driving away.
The high-speed chase covered five miles as Franklin drove at speeds as high as 90 miles per hour. Eventually, the officer was advised to stop his pursuit due to snowy and wet roadways.
The escape attempt occurred on Dec. 16 when Franklin was in the Clearfield County Jail.
Police say Franklin was able to get through a block door after a corrections officer retrieved another inmate.
He was then able to get through “multiple unlocked doors in the jail” before exiting to an outside area near the medical trailer.
At this point, he tried climbing the chain-link fence before falling and cutting his arm. He then went into the trailer where an employee asked him what he was doing and why he was bleeding.
Franklin told her he had been stabbed. After the employee asked where his officer escort was, Franklin “began frantically looking around” and ran deeper into the trailer. He got back outside and tried to climb the fence again.
Multiple officers then arrived in response to the employee’s call and were able to take him into custody.
Investigators were able to see blood on the fence where Franklin had cut his arm and on the railing at the trailer.