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Published: Saturday, 1/29/2011

Marshals nab 100 fugitives on Blade's 'Most Wanted Page'

The public service page, which runs every Tuesday and features 25 color booking photos of fugitives wanted for violent crimes, "has made a difference in our ability to get tips and help from the public," said U.S. Marshal Peter J. Elliott, who is in charge of the Marshals Service's Northern District of Ohio and formed the fugitive task force in 2003.

"What we're doing with the Toledo Blade is far exceeding our expectations. It's a great success. Any time we take one person off the streets, we all win. We're taking a lot of people off the streets," he said.

Deputy Toledo police Chief Derrick Diggs said the page generates 15 to 20 tips a day since it began in September.

"It's been a big success," he said. "It's very valuable."

People who provide tips that lead to arrests can receive a cash award from the Crime Stopper program and remain anonymous.

The suspects on the page are wanted in connection with thefts, burglaries, robberies, and assaults in Toledo as well as the Ohio counties of Lucas, Defiance, Erie, Fulton, Hancock, Henry, Ottawa, Sandusky, Wood, and Wyandot, and Monroe County, Michigan.

One recent arrest involved a suspect in a violent home invasion on Dec. 23 on Sulgrave Drive in Sylvania Township.

Authorities allege Ryan J. Spangler, 33, was among three men who tied up and robbed a homeowner and then exchanged gunfire with the victim. Authorities allege Ryan J. Spangler, 33, was among three men who tied up and robbed a homeowner and then exchanged gunfire with the victim.
NOT BLADE PHOTO Enlarge

Authorities allege Ryan J. Spangler, 33, of the 600 block of Durango Drive was among three men who tied up and robbed a homeowner and then exchanged gunfire with him after the robbery victim escaped his bonds.

He was arrested by the task force at 275 East Broadway on Jan. 21 and was being held in the Lucas County jail on $300,000 bond, charged with kidnapping, aggravated robbery, and felonious assault.

The Blade will continue running the weekly page for the rest of the year, said Joseph H. Zerbey IV, president and general manager of the newspaper.

"It's amazing how well it's working," Mr. Zerbey said. "We're very pleased to be of service."

The fugitive task force, working with federal, state, and local law enforcement, has made 25,000 arrests in 40 counties since its formation, Mr. Elliott said. It has been operating full-time in Toledo since 2005.

In 2008, the Marshals Service gave it the Director's Award for being the "Outstanding Fugitive Task Force" in the country.

Contact Carl Ryan at: carlryan@theblade.com or 419-724-6050.



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