KANSAS CITY, Mo. (KCTV) – The US Marshals Service announced the end of a month-long drive that resulted in the arrests of 833 fugitives, violent criminals, sex offenders and self-identified gang members in 10 US cities, including including Kansas City .
Operation North Star II focused on fugitives wanted for the most serious and violent crimes including homicide, coerced sexual assault, robbery or aggravated assault. Kansas City detectives arrested more than 51 individuals wanted for crimes including murder, assault, robbery, sexual offenses and weapons violations as part of the operation.
“A small number of people commit most of the crimes in the community,” said US Marshal Scott Seeling. “If we can locate and arrest those people, we get them off the street and we know they’re saving lives.”
The operation was conducted in Albuquerque, New Mexico; Buffalo, New York; Cleveland; Columbus, Ohio; Detroit; Jackson, Mississippi; City of Kansas City, Missouri; Milwaukee; Oakland, California and Puerto Rico.
The US Marshals Service used its extensive arrest authority throughout January along with a network of task forces across 10 cities to arrest 95 people wanted for murder, 70 for robbery, 98 for gun offenses, 200 for assault and 68 for sexual offences. assault. In addition, investigators seized 181 firearms, more than $229,000 in currency and more than 160 kilograms of illegal narcotics.
“Every gun we pick up on the street from a person who is a criminal who shouldn’t have one, I see as a gun that’s not going to be used to shoot or kill someone,” said Deputy US Marshal Micheal Stokes.
Kansas City was selected for Operation North Star II in part due to a high number of retaliatory shootings stemming from drug or gang activity or even minor disagreements.
“Unfortunately, last year in Kansas City, we had an exceptionally high number of homicides,” Seeling said. “We selected Kansas City based on its per capita homicide rate.”
Every week in Kansas City detectives hold a shooting review meeting to track who was shot, where the shootings are taking place, and why they’re trying to stop the cycle of violence. During the efforts of Operation North Star II in Kansas City, a suspect who had a felony warrant survived being shot days before a warrant was issued for his arrest.
“In this case, the quickest way to prevent a retaliatory shooting, or maybe there was unfinished business from the shooting, is to go out and get him into safe custody and that will break that chain of violence,” Stokes said. “The application is a small part of it. There are many ongoing efforts by city leaders, non-profit members, and religious organizations. It takes the whole city to fight the violence”.
During the operation, 11 other arrests were made for other serious crimes, including federal probation violations, conspiracy to distribute fentanyl, and conspiracy to distribute methamphetamines.