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For Immediate Release

April 2, 2009

United States Marshal

Western District of Washington

Joe Hawe (206) 370-8601
Sex Offender Investigations Branch
Senior Inspector Tom Lanier (206) 380-1048
USMS Headquarters Public Affairs (202) 307-9065


Seattle, WA – A level 3 Sex Offender wanted by The Washington State Department of Corrections and by the Snohomish County, Washington Sheriff’s Office has been arrested.  Eric Eugene Hartwell, 46, was wanted for Escape Community Custody and Failure to Register as a Sex Offender.  Hartwell was arrested in Carrollton, Texas by Deputy U.S. Marshals from the Dallas/Fort Worth Fugitive Apprehension Task Force based on information provided by Deputy U.S. Marshals working for the newly created Sex Offender Investigations Branch in Seattle, WA.
On March 20, 2009, Hartwell cut off his GPS monitoring device and absconded from supervision.  Hartwell had just been released from prison on March 13th after serving almost two years in custody for the same crime of Failure to Register as a Sex Offender.  Hartwell was being monitored by GPS ankle bracelet due to his past criminal history and original conviction for 1991 molestation of a six year old and the 1995 attempted rape of a 15 year old hitchhiker.   
In May of 2007, Harwell was also arrested by the U.S. Marshals Service in Orange County, California for Failure to Register as a Sex Offender and was extradited back to the State of Washington where he ultimately served almost two years in custody.  At that time, Hartwell had been traveling extensively across the United States living a transient lifestyle and authorities believe he could have been unregistered in as many as 25 states.  “This case is a perfect example of why the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act was enacted into law”, said U.S. Marshal for the Western District of Washington Joe Hawe. “Individuals such as Eric Hartwell who repeatedly flaunt sex offender registration laws will be pursued diligently by the U.S. Marshals Service and will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.”  Hartwell Apprehended Wanted Poster
Hartwell is being held at the Dallas County Jail in Dallas, Texas.  Hartwell will eventually be returned to the State of Washington to face prosecution on the local charges.  Hartwell may also be charged federally, either in Texas or Washington, with Failure to Register as a Sex Offender.