Cody Man Arrested Three Months After Escaping Custody

Cody Man Arrested Three Months After Escaping Custody

Written by on January 21, 2022

After eluding law enforcement for three months to avoid felony drug charges, Cody resident Phillip Dobbins will soon face overdue justice in a federal court.

On Wednesday, Jan. 19, United States Attorney Bob Murray announced that 44-year-old Cody resident Phillip Aaron Dobbins appeared before Chief United States Magistrate Judge Kelly H. Rankin. His recent arrest ended several weeks of hiding after Dobbins escaped custody in October 2021.

The federal indictment alleges that on or about Oct. 5, 2021, Dobbins escaped from the custody of The Life House of Sheridan, Wyoming, a residential treatment center. Ironically, he had been ordered to stay at the treatment center by the same judge – Chief United States Magistrate Judge Kelly Rankin – who he appeared before after his recent arrest.

Dobbins had been ordered to The Life House pending trial for another case – United States v. Phillip Aaron Dobbins, 21-CR-84-F. The trial was scheduled for Oct. 5, the same time Dobbins disappeared.

After avoiding capture for three months, Dobbins was arrested on Jan. 5. He has pleaded not guilty to the charge of escape from custody.

Dobbins 2022 mug shot

Courtesy Big Horn Sheriff’s Office

Dobbins was initially arrested in March 2021 on felony charges related to drug possession and trafficking, along with 37-year-old Natosha Martin.

The pair had traveled to Denver and picked up $40,000 of methamphetamine. It is believed Dobbins purchased the meth to sell in Park County – but he never got the opportunity to make a sale.

Dobbins was arrested during a routine traffic stop on Mar. 23, 2021. Officers didn’t discover the large quantity of meth until the vehicle was thoroughly searched at the Park County Law Enforcement Center.

Dobbins faces two felony counts of possessing a controlled substance for a third or subsequent time (meth and marijuana) for the March meth incident. He is also charged with a misdemeanor count of driving while under the influence of a controlled substance.

Natosha Martin has already faced justice and was found guilty of conspiracy to distribute. She was sentenced to 37 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release.

A trial for Phillip Dobbins has been set for Mar. 14, 2022. Until then, he will remain in the custody of the United States Marshals Service.

Courtesy Park County Sheriff’s Office

If convicted, Dobbins faces up to five years imprisonment, up to three years of supervised release, and a $100 special assessment.

The United States Marshals Service is investigating Dobbin’s escape. Assistant United States Attorney Timothy J. Forwood is prosecuting the case.

An indictment merely contains allegations, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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