Claudia Washburn, Mother of Escapee John McCluskey Pleads Guilty


Claudia Washburn will serve between six months and two-and-a-half years in prison for providing money to her infamous escapee son, John McCluskey.

The sentencing range is part of the plea deal the Payson resident accepted today in court, says the state Attorney General's office. 

In August, authorities say, Washburn, 68, sent cash to McCluskey and his two accomplices even though she knew he'd use it while on the lam. With the help of her money, the three made it to New Mexico and allegedly killed an Oklahoma couple while trying to steal their RV.

Some parents are simply more in touch with their children's needs.


McCluskey, his fiance/cousin Cassie Welch, and the other escapee, Tracy Province, face murder charges.

Washburn has served two months in jail since being arrested, but was released recently and placed under the watch of her daughter, the AG's office says. She'll remain free pending her sentencing, which is scheduled for January 7 before Commissioner Steve Lynch.

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Ray Stern has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arizona for more than two decades. He's won numerous awards for his reporting, including the Arizona Press Club's Don Bolles Award for Investigative Journalism.