Convicted killer back in custody after being granted COVID release by Detroit judge

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Posted at 11:05 PM, Feb 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-06 11:22:36-05

(WXYZ) — Convicted Detroit killer and drug trafficker John Bass is back in federal custody after being released due to COVID, sources tell 7 Action News.

The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals will now decide if he remains in custody or can be out again on a COVID Compassionate Release.

Bass was living in Eastpointe and told 7 Action News on Thursday on the phone that he had a new driver's license, a new job, he was going to reconnect with family and stay out of trouble.

Bass had served 22 years of two life sentences when Detroit Federal Judge Arthur Tarnow granted him a COVID release late last month.

Judge Tarnow ruled Bass had transformed his life in prison by getting a GED, completing training to become a life coach and at 322 pounds was at high risk of contracting COVID-19 in the Pennsylvania prison where 46% of inmates had contracted it.

The U.S. Attorney in Detroit appealed and the stay was granted late last night.

In that appeal, federal prosecutors argued that Judge Tarnow abused his discretion and wrote that Bass was still a danger to the public.

The 6th Circuit Court of Appeals tonight has granted a stay on the COVID Compassionate Release of a convicted killer who was serving 2 life sentences.

The order means Bass will be back in custody while the Court of Appeals also decides if the COVID release was justified or an abuse of discretion by Judge Tarnow.

2021 02-05 - Bass - Order Granting Stay by WXYZ-TV Channel 7 Detroit on Scribd