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Rick Scott, Governor
Florida Department of Corrections, Secretary Julie L. Jones

Florida Department of Corrections
Julie L. Jones, Secretary

Press Release
November 8, 2007
For More Information
Contact: Public Affairs Office
(850) 488-0420

Cold Case Fugitive Unit Assists in Locating Long-Time Escapees

Tallahassee - In keeping with the Florida Department of Corrections’ public safety mission, the Department’s Cold Case Fugitive Unit aggressively works to locate escaped inmates.  In the last 30 days, the Fugitive Unit assisted in apprehending seven fugitives who escaped from a Florida prison between 1975 and 1987.

The Cold Case Fugitive Unit is an initiative of Secretary James McDonough. “Many of these escaped criminals have violent backgrounds and all have a legal debt to pay to their victims and to society,” said Secretary James McDonough.  “Members of the Fugitive Unit do important work on the interest of public safety and I commend them for their dedication.  We are resolved to do our duty.  Escapees will not go unpunished.  We will bring them back to justice. ”

The Department formed its Cold Case Fugitive Unit in January to assist law enforcement in capturing escapees.  Since its formation, the efforts of the Fugitive Unit have resulted in the apprehension of 93 escapees. Numerous others have been confirmed as deceased and the Department has been able to close these cases.

Previously, when an inmate escaped, it was the responsibility of local law enforcement to locate and apprehend the fugitive.  Now the Fugitive Unit provides law enforcement with valuable information resulting in the apprehension of these fugitives.

Arrests within the last month

Daniel Alvarez
1984 - Sentenced to 10 years in prison for trafficking cocaine out of Broward County
1986 – Escaped from South Florida Reception Center
10/15/07 – Arrested by Miami-Dade Sheriff’s Department

Richard Davis
1979 – Sentenced to 5 years in prison for grand theft/motor vehicle out of Hillsborough County
1981 – Escaped from Cocoa Work Release Center
10/16/07 – Arrested by Orlando Police Department

Gary Wilson
1984- Sentenced to 4 years in prison for robbery and grand theft
1985- Escaped from Lantana Community Correctional Center
10/19/07- Arrested in Pearl, Mississippi

Michael Hess
1972 – Sentenced to 35 years in prison for robbery out of Hillsborough County
1979 – Escaped from Reception and Medical Center
10/25/07 – Arrested by Tampa Police Department

Timothy Scott
1974 – Sentenced to 6 months to life in prison for armed robbery out of Pinellas County
1987 – Escaped from Orlando Work Release Center
10/26/07 – Arrested by Orlando Police Department

Russell Trawick
1975 – Sentenced to 10 years in prison for check fraud out of Nassau County
1975 – Escaped from East Palatka Road Prison
10/30/07 – Arrested in Drexel, Mississippi

Stephen Saharko
1980 – Sentenced to 3 years 9 months in prison for marijuana sale/purchase out of Broward County
1981 – Escaped from Hollywood Work Release Center
11/2/07 – Arrested in Tucson, Arizona

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