UPDATE: Patton claims he was pressured into plea deal, wants guilty plea revoked

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WOWO): A Fort Wayne man who was seen as a flight risk after pleading guilty to felony neglect in the death of a 2-year-old girl is asking for his guilty plea to be revoked.

32-year-old Shane Patton was wanted by police after an officer overheard him last week say he planned to flee to “Canada or Omaha” ahead of today’s hearing to schedule his sentencing date. The Journal Gazette reports he asked the judge to take back his guilty plea, saying he was pressured into a plea deal by a public defender.

Patton will remain in custody until at least August 13th, when he will be assigned a new public defender.

Patton pleaded guilty last Friday to two counts of felony neglect in the January 2018 death of 2-year-old Jocelyn Belcher. The child’s mother has also pleaded guilty to neglect and will be sentenced August 2nd.

The initial plea deal calls for Patton to face up to 16 years in prison.

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