Covering the Land of Lincoln

Biden’s administration arrests more than eight hundred criminals

The U.S. Marshals Service has concluded Operation North Star II (ONS II), a high-impact initiative to apprehend fugitive criminals focused on tackling violent crime in 10 cities that have an increase in shootings and murders.

This 30-day initiative led to the detention of 833 fugitives as well as violent criminals, sexual offenders, and self-identified gang members in Albuquerque, New Mexico; Buffalo, New York; Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio; Detroit, Michigan; Jackson, Mississippi; Kansas City, Missouri; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; Oakland, California; and Puerto Rico.

ONS II focused on suspects who were wanted for the most serious, violent and dangerous offenses, such as murder, forcible sexual assault or robbery, as well as assault that is aggravated. ONS II investigators prioritized their efforts to identify those who were using firearms as part of their crime or who had the risk factors that were associated with violence.

“The results of this operation should make clear that the Justice Department and our partners across the country will stop at nothing to find and bring to justice those responsible for violent crime,” said Attorney General Merrick B. Garland. “The U.S. Marshals Service, and the entire Justice Department, will continue to work in partnership with community officials and law enforcement personnel across the nation to ensure the safety of our communities.”

“The U.S. Marshals Service remains steadfast in its commitment to assisting law enforcement as well as community leaders of all levels to combat the violence of crime.” stated Director Ronald Davis of the U.S. Marshals Service. “The achievement of ONS II is based on its laser focus on the most important causes of violence. We are confident that apprehending these offenders will bring some degree of justice to their victims and aid in the overall violence reduction efforts in each city and hopefully bring a level of justice to the victims.”

Throughout the month of January in the United States, the U.S. Marshals Service used its broad arrest authority and task force network to arrest suspects wanted on charges including 95 for murder as well as 68 who were charged with sexual assault. Investigators also seized 181 firearms, more than $229,000 in currency plus more than 160 kilograms of illicit drug use.

Notable arrests included:

Walter Abbott was arrested on Jan. 18 in Rio Rancho, New Mexico by members of the Southwest Fugitive Task Force. Abbott was wanted in Sandoval County, New Mexico, for first-degree attempted homicide and aggravated burglary with the use of a deadly weapon.

Paris Jackson was arrested on Jan. 31 in Buffalo, New York, by members of the New York/New Jersey Regional Fugitive Task Force. Jackson was wanted in Buffalo for second-degree criminal possession of a firearm and for shooting at a police officer.

Gregory Kalvitz and Jessica Downing were arrested on Jan. 20 in Cleveland by members of the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force. They were wanted in Henry County, Ohio, for interference of the custody warrant following the abduction of an 8-year-old girl and fleeing.

Jermaine Westbrook was detained in January. 26 in Parkersburg, West Virginia, by a team of the U.S. Marshals Service Southern District of West Virginia, with assistance from members of the Southern Ohio Fugitive Apprehension Strike Team. Westbrook was wanted in Franklin County, Ohio, for murder, felony assault as well as parole violation.

Richard Nichols was arrested on Jan. 30 in Albion, Michigan, by members of the Detroit Fugitive Apprehension Team. Nichols was sought by the Michigan State Police for assault with the intent of murder.

Gerard Parker was arrested on Jan. 26 in Harrison County, Mississippi, by members of the Gulf Coast Regional Fugitive Task Force. Parker was wanted in New Orleans for third-degree sexual assault and parole violations.

Aaron Payne was arrested on Jan. 18 in Kansas City, Missouri, by members of the Missouri Violent Fugitive Task Force. Payne was wanted in Tarrant County, Texas, for felony assault strangulation.

Antonio Jenkins was arrested on Jan. 13 in West Allis, Wisconsin, by members of the Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force. Jenkins was wanted in Milwaukee for numerous charges including first-degree reckless endangering safety, felon in possession of a firearm, battery, and sale/possess/use/transport of a machine gun.

Michael Nguyen was arrested on Jan. 11 in Oakland, California, by members of the Pacific Southwest Regional Fugitive Task Force. Nguyen was wanted in Oakland for possession of weapons that were illegal and weapons, manufacturing illegally and for firing firearms.

Edwin Padilla-Lopez was arrested on Feb. 3 in Carolina, Puerto Rico, by members of the Puerto Rico Violent Offender Task Force and Puerto Rico Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force. Padilla-Lopez was wanted by the District of Puerto Rico for conspiracy to distribute controlled substances within the municipalities of Caguas, Cidra, and Aguas Buenas.

The idea behind interagency law enforcement agencies such as ONS II evolved largely from regional and district task forces. Since the 1980s, the U.S. Marshals Service has combined their resources and experience with local, state, and federal agencies to find and apprehend dangerous fugitives.

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