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U.S. Marshals Service

Fugitive Safe Surrender


Indianapolis, Indiana - April 25-28, 2007

Fugitive Safe Surrender in the Indianapolis/Marion County area took place on April 25-28, 2007, under the leadership of Peter Swaim, United States Marshal for the Southern District of Indiana. This successful operation resulted in 531 individuals turning themselves in to law enforcement over the four-day period.

FSS StaffEncouraged by the success of earlier Fugitive Safe Surrender operations in Cleveland, Ohio, and Phoenix, Arizona, Marshal Swaim spent nearly 18 months working with community and criminal justice leaders to lay the groundwork for a successful operation in Indianapolis. Reverend Stephen J. Clay of Messiah Missionary Baptist Church agreed to serve as the faith-based leader of Fugitive Safe Surrender in Indianapolis and hosted the surrender days in his church.

Key partners in the Indianapolis/Marion County Fugitive Safe Surrender operation included the United States Marshals Service, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Indiana, the Messiah Missionary Baptist Church, the Marion Superior Court, the Marion County Probation Office, the Marion County Circuit Court, and D.C. Strategic Partners, LLC.

Other key participants included the Marion County Prosecutor’s Office, the Marion County Public Defender’s Office, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, the Marion County Justice Agency, and the Marion County Community Corrections Director.

In all, 203 felony warrants were cleared. Each of the individuals who surrendered with an active warrant was seen by a judge at the Fugitive Safe Surrender site for disposition of his or her case. Forty-two of the individuals who surrendered were remanded into custody, and 114 individuals surrendered who had no active warrants in the jurisdiction.

Individuals who surrendered during the Indianapolis operation were asked to complete a voluntary survey, and more than 90% of them did so, thus providing valuable information for future Fugitive Safe Surrender operations. The vast majority of those surrendering had heard about the program through television or print media. Nearly 70% of those surrendering came with a friend or family member, and most of the program participants indicated that they wanted to surrender so they could either get a fresh start on life or get a job. Many also indicated that they were fearful of being arrested and found surrendering to be an attractive alternative. Forty-four percent indicated that they desired assistance with job training, while 22% indicated that they desired assistance in completing their education.

In most cities in which Fugitive Safe Surrender will take place, the Marshals Service plans to work not only with the religious and legal/judicial communities, but also with counseling and job placements services to assist those who seek to turn their lives around. The majority of participants responding to the survey in Indianapolis indicated that job training (44%), education (22%), substance abuse counseling (9%), parenting skills training (8%), mental health services (8%), and anger management support (6%) were services that they would find helpful if available to them.

The Marshals Service has enlisted the assistance of Kent State University to prepare, compile, and analyze the results of the survey and assist in future Fugitive Safe Surrender operations.


Fugitive Safe Surrender


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