U.S. Marshals operation nets more than 140 regional arrests

NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — More than 140 fugitives, gang members, sex offenders and violent criminals are off the streets in the Eastern District of Virginia as a result of Operation Violence Reduction 7.

The six-week U.S. Marshals-led operation combined the information and manpower of federal, state and local law enforcement. It was part of a national enforcement initiative that resulted in more than 7,100 arrests between March 2 and April 10. Ten missing children were also recovered.

Photos: Hampton Roads fugitives arrested

“When we put down the borders and decide to come together as a group, there is power in that, and this group has done a great job,” Norfolk Police Chief Michael Goldsmith said.

The operation targeted the worst of the worst — fugitives wanted for murder and other violent crimes, abduction and kidnapping, sexual assault, molestation, and other felony offenses. Apprehending gang members and sex offenders were also a high-priority.

“This was not a quantity, this was going for quality,” Deputy U.S. Marshal Chis Leuer said. “We targeted those that had at least three prior felony arrests and were currently wanted for a violent offense or a drug related offense.”

Just in Hampton Roads, more than a dozen of our most wanted are now behind bars — click here to view some of them.

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