San Francisco, CA – Today the U.S.
Marshals Service (USMS) concluded Operation Guardian, a three-year, national
initiative specifically targeting the country’s most dangerous noncompliant
sex offenders. Deputy Marshals and law enforcement partners arrested 345
individuals nationwide who had failed to register with state authorities as
required by law.
Marshals worked with state and local officials to identify specific
non-registering fugitives based on their danger to the public and prior
convictions for sex offenses. As of today, USMS investigators have located
427 offenders of 444 sought (or 96 percent of those targeted), including 82
individuals found outside the United States. These individuals represent
more than 500 prior convictions for sexual offenses.
Five of the individuals identified during Operation Guardian were local to
the bay area. These individuals were determined by authorities to be the bay
areas “worst of the worst.” Among them were Robert Mitchell, 53, and Raymond
Through and extensive investigation, Mitchell was found to be working for a
traveling carnival company at a state fair in Pocatello, Idaho. Mitchell was
wanted by the San Francisco Police Department for Failure to Register as a
Sex Offender. Mitchell was originally convicted of sexually assaulting a
medically institutionalized person. Acting on a lead from the U.S. Marshals
Service in Oakland, CA, U.S. Marshals Deputies located and apprehended
Mitchell in Idaho.
Chavez was initially wanted by the California Department of Corrections for
parole violations. Chavez was originally charged by the State of California
with rape. Chavez had been sought on the parole warrant by US Marshals and
arrested in Colorado. While in custody in Colorado, he managed to escape and
was believed to have left the state. An active parole warrant was
reinstated. US Marshals Deputies in Colorado, thinking that he may have fled
to Texas, attempted to locate him but were unable to confirm his exact
whereabouts. The case was sent to the National Sex Offender Targeting Center
(NSOTC) for analysis. With the assistance of the NSOTC, investigators were
able to find an address for Chavez’s wife in Dallas, TX. The updated
information was sent to the US Marshals Sex Offender Investigations
Coordinator in Dallas, and Chavez was found living with his wife and was
taken into custody.
“Operation Guardian is an excellent example of how the resources of the U.S.
Marshals Service along with its local, state, federal, tribal, and
international law enforcement partners team up to make our communities safe
from violent and dangerous sex offenders,” said Don O’Keefe the United
States Marshal for the Northern District of California.
The U.S. Marshals Service assigns 129 criminal investigators to conduct sex
offender, non-registrant investigations on a full-time basis. Operation
Guardian was a collaborative effort led by the Marshals Service in
cooperation with Interpol, the Diplomatic Security Service, Customs and
Border Protection, and the National Center for Missing and Exploited
The Behavioral Analysis Unit at the U.S. Marshals Service National Sex
Offender Targeting Center worked with the investigators to identify
information related to the fugitives across a number of personal or social
dimensions, including past sexual offending behavior. The prior convictions
of the located offenders represent hundreds of victims and thousands of
known sexual assaults. Most of the sexual assault events were engaged
against children, and many involved extreme violence.
The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children estimates more than
700,000 sex offenders reside in the U.S. and that more than 100,000 are
classified as noncompliant or unregistered. Since its inception in 2006, the
SOIB has planned and executed more than 900 sex offender compliance and
enforcement operations. During these operations, the USMS partnered with
more than 4,800 state and local law enforcement agencies to conduct more
than 150,000 compliance checks.
information about the U.S. Marshals Service can be found at
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