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For Immediate Release

October 09, 2012 Ross Wilber, Deputy U.S. Marshal
Northern District of Ohio (216) 214-1597
U.S. Marshals Task Force Arrests Fugitive on the Run Since 2008

NOVFTF LogoMansfield, OH – Friday evening, October 5, members of the U.S. Marshals Mountain State Fugitive Task Force in West Virginia arrested William Smith, 51, at a hotel in Buckhannon, WV. Smith was wanted by the Richland County Sheriff’s Office for Escape, a felony of the 2nd degree. He was also wanted by the Ohio Adult Parole Authority (APA) for violating his parole on an original charge of Felonious Assault as well as by the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office for Burglary.

In early 2008, Smith was released from prison in Richland County and failed to report to his parole officer. In February 2009, he was indicted for Escape and APA listed him as a parole violator at large. Smith has been on the run ever since and in March of 2012 the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force (NOVFTF), Richland County Division initiated a fugitive investigation to track down Smith. In May of this year Smith was added to the NOVFTF “Dangerous Dozen” which profiles 12 fugitives in newspapers all over the state of Ohio. A few months ago this media attention generated a tip that gave investigators a new lead on Smith. The fugitive investigation then led investigators to Southern Ohio and several cities in West Virginia, where investigators from the Southern Ohio Fugitive Apprehension Strike Team and the Mountain State Fugitive Task Force coordinated their efforts, which resulted in Smith’s arrest at the Colonial Hotel on Kanawha Street, Buckhannon, WV. Smith is currently awaiting extradition back to Richland County. Assistant Chief Deputy Drew Deserto stated, “Great work by all the investigators on this case. This dangerous fugitive thought he could flee the State of Ohio and evade the law. I am proud of the work of the Richland County Division of our Task Force with tracking down and returning this dangerous fugitive to face justice for his crimes.”

Anyone with information concerning any wanted fugitive can contact the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force at 1-866-4WANTED (1-866-492-6833). You may also anonymously text in a tip by texting the keyword "WANTED" and your tip to TIP411 (847411), or you can send a web tip at the following webpage Reward money is available and tipsters may remain anonymous.

The Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force - Richland County Division is composed of the following federal, state and local agencies: Ashland County Sheriff’s Office, Ashland Municipal Probation, Ashland Police Department, Bellville Police Department, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms, Butler Police Department, Crestline Police Department, Galion Police Department, Lexington Police Department, Loudonville 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.

Additional information about the U.S. Marshals Service can be found at


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