US Marshals Nab 1,500 Violent Fugitives In 'Operation North Star'

More than 1,500 fugitives were captured by US Marshals in a 30-day initiative across several major US cities.

Operation North Star

Operation North Star

Photo Credit: US Marshals Service

The fugitives busted in Operation North Star (ONS) include violent criminals, sex offenders, and self-identified gang members in Baltimore, Chicago, Houston, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Memphis, New Orleans, New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C., the agency said.

Operation North Star focused on fugitives wanted for the most serious, violent, and harmful offenses, including homicide, sexual assault, robbery, or aggravated assault. Operation North Star investigators prioritized their efforts to include individuals using firearms in their crimes, or who exhibited risk factors associated with violence.

Notable arrests resulting from Operation North Star:

  • On June 4, Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force (GLRFTF) members arrested Jose Galiano-Meza, 28, who was wanted out of Douglas County, Kansas, for homicide. Galiano-Meza was the suspect in a hit-and-run that resulted in the death of a 10-year-old girl from Eudora, Kansas. A collateral lead was sent by the District of Kansas to the GLRFTF in Indianapolis where Galiano-Meza was located and arrested.
  • On June 6, members of the Eastern Pennsylvania Violent Crime Fugitive Task Force (EPVCFTF) arrested Rashaan Vereen, 34, for attempted homicide, aggravated assault, and firearms charges. Vereen was one of the suspects in a mass shooting incident on June 4 on South Street in Philadelphia in which three people were killed and 11 injured. Also arrested in connection with the shooting were Quran Garner, 18, and a 15-year-old suspect.
  • On June 8, members of the New York/New Jersey Regional Fugitive Task Force (NY/NJRFTF) arrested Dionte Mitchell, 22, on two counts of homicide and possession of a weapon during a violent crime. Mitchell allegedly shot and killed two female victims after a dispute at a party.
  • On June 9, members of the NY/NJRFTF arrested Jaden Baskerville, 21. He was wanted in New York for attempted homicide in connection with a drive-by shooting that resulted in the injury of a seven-year-old girl. Task Force members located Baskerville at a residence in Brooklyn and arrested him without incident.
  • On June 14, GLRFTF members arrested Prince Cunningham, 49, for homicide. Cunningham was wanted by the Aurora (Illinois) Police Department on two counts of first-degree murder on a cold case homicide from May 9, 2003. After conducting countless hours of surveillance at multiple locations, investigators spotted Cunningham getting into the driver’s seat of a pickup truck. They broke surveillance, approached Cunningham and safely arrested him.
  • On June 16, Capital Area Regional Fugitive Task Force (CARFTF) members arrested Robert Bakersville, 28, for homicide. At the residence where Bakersville was arrested, a search warrant was conducted and ammunition and parts consistent with building a “ghost gun” were seized.

Throughout the month of June, the U.S. Marshals Service used its broad arrest authority and network of task forces to arrest individuals wanted on charges, including 230 for homicide; and 131 for sexual assault. In addition, investigators seized 166 firearms, more than $53,600 in currency, and more than 33 kilograms of illegal narcotics.

The concept behind interagency law enforcement operations such as Operation North Star evolved largely from regional and district task forces. Since the 1980s, the Marshals Service has combined their resources and expertise with local, state, and federal agencies to find and apprehend dangerous fugitives. Operation North Star continued the tradition.

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