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Convicted Double Murderer Returns To Hudson Valley

Belton Lee Brims, 62
Belton Lee Brims, 62 Photo Credit: Rockland County Sheriff's Office
The wanted poster for Belton Lee Brims.
The wanted poster for Belton Lee Brims. Photo Credit: Rockland County Sheriff's Office

ROCKLAND COUNTY, N.Y. -- A man who escaped from the Rockland County Jail in 1981 where he was being held for the brutal murder of a Monsey couple, is back in the Rockland County Jail after serving more than 36 in prison in New Jersey for armed robbery.

Belton Lee Brims, 62, was returned to Rockland County Sheriff’s Office detectives on Friday to begin serving two terms of 25 years to life for the December 1980 murders of Arnold and Elain Sohn, said Det. Lt. Ted Brovarski of the Sheriff's Office.

Brims is also known for his July 6, 1981, escape from the old Rockland County Jail while awaiting trial for the Sohn murders. He was located approximately three weeks later in Selma, Ala., and returned to custody.

Arnold and Elaine Sohn were killed in December 1980 in their Monsey home by Brims and his accomplice James Sheffield, during a robbery. The robbery had been masterminded by the Sohn’s daughter, Sheryl Sohn, Brovarski said.

During the robbery, Arnold Sohn was beaten to death and his wife, Elaine was drowned in the bathtub, police said.

Both Sheffield and Sheryl Sohn were also convicted of the murders. Sheffield remains in custody in a New York State prison. Sheryl Sohn was paroled in 2009 after serving approximately 28 years.

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