Tonya Grant, who once worked at the Jerome Combs Detention Center in south suburban Kankakee as a correctional officer, is now an inmate facing charges for obstruction of justice in connection with her nephew’s escape from the facility.
The 50-year-old Grant is accused of aiding in the escape of her nephew, who was convicted of murder, after he fled from the Kankakee Jail facility while awaiting his sentencing hearing.
Kamron Taylor, 23, violently attacked a guard last Wednesday before fleeing in the guard’s vehicle and leading police on a three-day manhunt that ended in Chicago.
Police and prosecutors said in court Monday that the day after Taylor’s escape, Grant told an officer her nephew had not contacted anyone she knew. Grant’s daughter later told police Taylor had contacted her and her mother was aware of it.
Officials alleged in court that Grant visited her nephew while he was in jail and talked to him about exit doors at the facility. Police said Grant initially denied having the conversation but later admitted to it. The jail is also believed to have video of the visit.
Law enforcement officials declined to discuss their case against Grant Tuesday, but the Kankakee County State’s Attorney’s office said their investigation is far from over.
“The investigation into the events which led to the escape of Kamron Taylor, and his eventual recapture is not yet fully completed,” Kankakee County State’s Attorney Jamie Boyd said in a statement. “As evidence becomes available our office will continue to work closely with the Sheriff’s office and other agencies in determining what charges will be filed against Taylor and anyone who assisted him. New information continues to come to light and is being reviewed and followed up on by the Sheriff’s office.”
Grant is next scheduled to appear in court April 28.
Taylor is being held at the Cook County Jail without bail pending his sentencing for first-degree murder. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for May 6 in Kankakee County.