A Level 3 sex offender who fled parole for two years after cutting off a GPS monitoring anklet was sent back to state prison Monday.
Frederick H. Winney, 61, formerly of Fuller Street, surrendered to authorities in February, two years after disappearing, prosecutor Jessica Lorusso said.
Winney had pleaded guilty earlier to a felony count of failing to register as a sex offender. Judge Karen Drago sentenced him Monday in Schenectady County Court to one to three years in state prison.
It was Winney’s first offense for failing to register, Lorusso said, but the circumstances called for prison time.
Winney was declared a Level 3 sex offender — deemed the highest risk to reoffend — due to 1991 convictions for rape and sodomy in Schenectady County.
For that, he was sentenced to a total of 121⁄2 to 25 years in state prison. He was released on parole in 2010. Among the requirements was that he wear a GPS monitoring anklet. As a Level 3 offender, he was also supposed to register his address with police.
Months after his release, Winney, then living in Schenectady, cut the monitor off his ankle and fled, Lorusso said. His probation officer was immediately notified that the anklet was removed. He went to Winney’s residence to find the anklet on the TV stand and Winney nowhere to be found.
Authorities looked for him in the meantime, but didn’t hear anything until February, when he turned himself in, Lorusso said. It was unclear what led Winney to surrender, she said.
Also unclear is what he was doing for those two years. Winney told authorities he remained in the Schenectady area, but there’s no evidence of that, Lorusso said.
With his arrest, Winney was also charged with violating his parole in the rape and sodomy case. How much extra prison time he will get for that remains to be determined, Lorusso said. Whatever the term, it will run consecutive to his time for failing to register.
Had he stayed under parole supervision, he would have been off parole in 2015. But that date is expected to be extended due to the violation.
In the 1991 case, Winney, then 39, was convicted after trial of raping a 20-year-old woman in her Schenectady apartment. He previously was sent to prison for drugs and sexual abuse in Saratoga County, newspaper records show.
In 2007, Winney sued to be released from prison, alleging he was being kept only because he didn’t have a suitable living arrangements. He wasn’t released until December 2010, having served about 19 years of his sentence.