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Task Force ‘Operation TOAST’ Nets Sex Offenders

The U.S. Marshals Service-led Detroit Fugitive Apprehension Team (DFAT) conducted a three-day sex offender sweep in the City of Detroit from Tuesday through today. DFAT — comprising the U.S. Marshals, Michigan State Police, Wayne County Sheriff’s Department, Detroit Police Department, Dearborn Police Department, Livonia Police Detroit Department, Sterling Heights Police Department, Macomb County Sheriff’s Department, Oakland County Sheriff’s Department, Hamtramck Police Department, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, and Michigan Department of Corrections — works in concert to arrest dangerous fugitive felons as well as sex offenders. TOAST, which stands for Tracking Offenders and Apprehending Significant Targets, targeted sex offenders in the Detroit Area. There are currently 800 non-compliant sex offenders within the City of Detroit, 400 of whom have outstanding warrants for criminal offenses.

More than 80 officers worked the sweep that netted 70 Sex Offender Registry Felony arrests. These felonies were for cases that involved violent sexual assaults. Also, there were six Friend of the Court arrests, 19 misdemeanor arrests and 656 potential violations of sex offender laws investigated and cleared. Finally, 83 Detroit Police, 63 Michigan State Police and 22 U.S. Marshals Adam Walsh Act felony investigations have been initiated from information gathered during the sweep.

One case involved Shantee Brown who was wanted for bond jumping. His original charge was for 1st degree sexual assault, kidnapping, assault with a deadly weapon, felony firearm and 3rd degree sexual assault. He was given bond on the case and fled the State of Michigan Sept. 13. DFAT tracked Brown to Birmingham, Ala. The U.S. Marshals-led Gulf Coast Regional Fugitive Task Force worked the case and arrested Brown Sept. 26. Brown attempted to flee from officers on a bike but was apprehended after being chased. He is currently awaiting extradition to Michigan.

The U.S. Marshals were given federal responsibility under the Adam Walsh Act in 2006 to apprehend federal sex offenders. Part of this responsibility is to partner with state and local law enforcement to ensure that sex offenders register under the law and arrest those who do not.

“DFAT is an outstanding example of law enforcement at all levels coming together for the common purpose of removing violent fugitives and sex offenders from the streets and neighborhoods of our communities,” U.S. Marshal Robert M. Grubbs said. Grubbs said he could not be any prouder of the efforts of all the officers involved.

Wayne County Sheriff Benny N. Napoleon echoed Grubb’s comments. “The collaboration that went into getting these violent offenders off the street must be commended,” he said. “I know the effort prevented a number of innocent people from becoming their next victims. We will continue teaming up to send the message that fleeing custody is not an option because you will be caught and face the consequences in court.”

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