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One of Fauquier’s ‘most wanted’ arrested in Minnesota

Tuesday, Apr. 22 | By Mark Grandstaff | Google+
Lafonzo French
Updated April 23

A man who escaped Fauquier police in his boxers last year was found and arrested in Benton County, Minn. on Monday night, said Lt. James Hartman, spokesman for the Fauquier County Sheriff's Office.

United States Marshals, working in conjunction with Fauquier deputies, arrested Lafonzo French, who has been wanted for drug charges since his escape last July.

Last year, Virginia State Police and Fauquier deputies arrested French after a narcotics investigation in the 5600 block of Beach Road near Casanova. Sheriff's deputies had French in custody when he escaped, wearing only a pair of boxers.

On July 1, 2013, Fauquier County issued five felony arrest warrants against French for dangerous drugs, regarding distribution of cocaine and amphetamines. A sixth warrant was issued for resisting arrest.

Deputy U.S. Marshals in Virginia and Fauquier detectives, coupled with the Virginia State Police Blue Ridge Narcotics and Gang Task Force, tracked French into Florida, according to a release from the U.S. Marshals. Law enforcement learned that French was previously in Florida, but had recently fled the area.

In March, deputies in Virginia learned that French was living in an apartment complex located near 15th Street Ct. and 2nd Avenue North in Sauk Rapids, Minn. The U.S. Marshals in Virginia quickly informed their counterparts in Minnesota, according to the release.

Monday afternoon, deputies apprehended French at that apartment complex. Upon knocking and announcing police presence, French went out to the rear balcony. He was about to jump until he realized the overwhelming police presence in the back. Investigators gained entrance into the apartment and French surrendered.

"The Fauquier County Sheriff’s Office and the Virginia State Police Blue Ridge Narcotics and Gang Task Force played a critical role, working hand-in-hand with the USMS, in capturing this violent fugitive," said Desmond Proctor, a deputy U.S. marshal in the Eastern District of Virginia - Alexandria.

French's criminal history includes felonious assault and battery, numerous charges for possession with intent to sell controlled substances, numerous charges for carrying a concealed weapon, multiple malicious wounding charges, shooting at an occupied vehicle, use of a firearm in commission of malicious wounding, numerous failures to appear in court, and a probation/parole violation.

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