The Jig is Up: Fugitive Caught after Four Years on the Run - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

The Jig is Up: Fugitive Caught after Four Years on the Run

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Mansfield, Ohio - The U.S. Marshals Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force has tracked down another fugitive wanted for sex offenses. Eddie Spillman was wanted by the Richland County Sheriffs Office and the State of Ohio Adult Parole Authority. His warrants included Failure to Register as a Sex Offender, Escape and Violation of Parole. Spillman was considered one of Richland County's top wanted fugitives.

Spillman was convicted of Sexual Battery and Burglary in 1991 and sentenced to 10-15 years in prison. Spillman failed to appear for his court hearing and a warrant was issue. His case was profiled on the FOX show America's Most Wanted and within days, Spillman was located and taken into custody in Texas. Spillman served the majority of his sentence in the Ohio State Prison system until he was transferred to the Volunteers of America Halfway House in Mansfield, OH in May of 2004. Spillman remained at the halfway house until July 2005 when he escaped and fled the area. Over the next four years investigators from the U.S. Marshals Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force, Richland County Sheriffs Office, Shelby Police Department and the Ohio Adult Parole Authority followed countless leads across the United States.

In 2007, Spillman was featured again on America's Most Wanted and his profile remained on the show's website. Numerous leads were followed by investigators but they all seem to lead to a dead end. Until September 21, 2009 when an alert Ohio resident recognized the photo from the America's Most Wanted website and contacted the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force informing them that Spillman was working post hurricane Katrina construction on New Orleans and he was using the alias of Robert E Spillman. U.S. Marshals Task Force personnel in Ohio and Louisiana worked together to reveal that the fugitive assumed his brother's identity.

U.S. Marshals Task Force Officers in New Orleans Set up a surveillance on possible locations throughout the city and on the morning of Wednesday September 23rd when alerts officers noticed a man matching the description of the fugitive leaving an apartment on the 700 block on Central Avenue in Metairie, LA. Task Force Officers immediately confronted the suspect and placed him in custody. The subject identified himself as Robert Spillman and refused to answer any questions. He was subsequently booked as a fugitive from justice at the Jefferson Parish Correctional Center in Gretna, LA, where he is awaiting extradition back to Ohio.

Richland County Sheriff Steve Sheldon stated "If it wasn't for our partnership with the U.S. Marshals Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force, this violent sex offender would have never been captured. The Task Force never rests on these violent offenders that threaten our community."

United States Marshal Peter Elliott added "The hands of the U.S. Marshal Service reach farther than most people realize. This arrest would not have been possible if the Deputies and Task Force Officers had not had such open lines of communication. It is a credit to them and the vigilance that they put forth to bring this man to justice."

Anyone with information regarding the whereabouts of a known fugitive is encouraged to contact the U.S. Marshals Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force at: 1-866-4-WANTED. Callers may remain anonymous.

The Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force in Richland County is composed of the following federal, state and local agencies: Ashland County Sheriff's Office, Bellville Police Department, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms, Butler Police Department, Lexington Police Department, Mansfield Municipal Probation, Mansfield Police Department, Ohio Adult Parole Authority, Ontario Police Department, Plymouth Police Department, Richland County Probation, Richland County Prosecutor's Office, Richland County Sheriff's Office, Shelby Police Department and the U.S. Marshals Service.

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