Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Gazette Premium Content Prison gang member pleads guilty in connection to Colorado Springs police chase

By Lance Benzel Published: September 20, 2013

A white supremacist gang member arrested in the wake of the slaying of Colorado prisons chief Tom Clements has pleaded guilty to unrelated charges.

James Franklin Lohr Jr., 47, was sentenced Thursday to nine years in prison after pleading guilty the same day to vehicular eluding and possession of a weapon by a previous offender, prosecutors said. A copy of his plea agreement wasn't available.

Lohr, a member of the 211 Crew prison gang, was identified as a person of interest in the probe into Clements' killing at the front door of his Monument-area home in March by fellow 211 Crew member Evan Spencer Ebel.

Ebel died in a shootout with Texas authorities within days of Clements' shooting.

Colorado Springs police arrested Lohr in early April after a wild chase on the city's east side.

Although El Paso County sheriff's investigators said they suspected Lohr had been in contact with Ebel before the killing, he wasn't directly charged in Clements' slaying. Another paroled gang member previously identified by sheriff's investigators as a person of interest, Thomas Guolee, was also arrested earlier this year but wasn't charged, court records show.

The investigation into Clements' death has led to intense scrutiny of the Colorado-based 211 Crew, allegedly formed by inmate Benjamin Davis, who remains incarcerated.

According to a lawsuit filed earlier this year, investigators are hunting for possible financial links between the all-white prison gang and Homaidan Al-Turki, a wealthy Saudi inmate whose pending transfer to a Saudi Arabian prison was scuttled by Clements a week before his death.

Al-Turki, who is serving an eight years-to-life sentence on rape allegations, has denied involvement.

He is suing the Colorado Department of Corrections for unfair treatment in the wake of Clements death, saying he was subject to prison transfers and other punitive measures.

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