A prisoner who broke out of jail to visit his dying grandson has been sentenced to just six-months behind bars after a judge took pity on the convicted armed robber.
John Cadby, 45, dramatically escaped from HMP Sudbury on January 21 this year after wrestling with a security guard and scaling a 10ft wall.
A court heard he made his dash for freedom in a frantic bid to visit his cancer-stricken grandson in hospital after he was denied home leave.
The toddler’s family had been considering jetting him to America for potentially life-saving treatment and Cadby feared he would never see the 22-month-old again.
But Cadby – who was caged for six years in 2010 for armed robbery and kidnap – was rearrested after being found by police at a house in Tile Cross, Birmingham, 12 days later.
At Birmingham Crown last week Cadby admitted fleeing from custody but received only an extra six months in jail after Judge Stuart Rafferty QC deemed his case “exceptional”.
The judge told him: “I accept entirely that it had weighed heavily on your mind that your grandson was ill and may go to America and you may never see him again.”
Anthony Potter, defending, said Cadby’s grandson had been at Birmingham Children’s Hospital since last October.
He said: “The boy had a particularly aggressive form of cancer and it had been proposed to send him to the US.
”His request for home leave had been refused before he took the stupid decision to escape.”
Cadby, of no fixed address, has since been held at higher-security Birmingham Prison.
He fled from the Derbyshire open prison while serving a six year sentence imposed in October 2010 for a robbery in Sutton Coldfield, West Mids.
Cadby had stolen a bag containing money from a terrified member of the public while wielding an AXE.
He was captured by police who restrained him nearby after he jumped into a passing car and tried to order the driver to help him flee.
* HMP Sudbury hit the headlines in June, 2011, when it emerged more than 100 criminals had escaped in the previous four years.