FBI most wanted murder suspect arrested after more than four years on the run
More than four years ago, in November 2014, Lamont Stephenson was charged with the brutal murder of his girlfriend, Olga DeJesus, and her dog. The two were killed in Newark, New Jersey, where Stephenson was known to have lived. After he was identified as a suspect, however, he fled the state.
For years, he evaded capture, eventually earning himself a spot on the FBI's top 10 most wanted list. This week, it was announced that he had been located - and it was all thanks to a call about a "suspicious person".
Officers responding to a 911 call found a man sleeping in a rental truck at about 2 a.m. in Prince George's County, just outside of Washington D.C. The man initially claimed that he was homeless, and had only taken refuge in the truck in order to stay out of the cold. After being asked his name, however, Stephenson confessed that he was wanted in a number of crimes, and was promptly arrested.
"I am proud to announce after 147 days on the Top 10 list, Lamont Stephenson was arrested this morning," FBI Newark Special Agent in Charge Gregory Ehrie said yesterday at a press conference in New Jersey.
"One hundred and 47 days ago, I stood in this room and spoke to members of the press with my partners from the local and state entities behind you and we said that the world becomes a very small place and we warned Mr. Stephenson that he would be found."
The family of DeJesus, Stephenson's victim, are grateful that he has finally been located.
"We are just overwhelmed right now," said Felix DeJesus, the victim's brother. "We're happy. Everyone played a role in this and we are grateful ... Every single day for four years I waited for that phone call, every single day."
Since his arrest, it has been announced that Stephenson is a suspect in another murder.
Natina Kiah, who is believed to have been dating the wanted man, was found stabbed to death along with her cat in Washington D.C. on Wednesday night. Police had already issued a warrant for Stephenson's arrest when they were alerted to the murder.
The FBI had previously warned that Stephenson was extremely dangerous, and was expected to kill again.
"For him to be calm and collected after he had just strangled his fiancee shows a certain coldness and calculation," FBI Special Agent Carl Priddy said in a release last year. "He is definitely capable of doing this again."
Prior to Stephenson's apprehension earlier this week, the FBI had been offering a $100,000 reward for information leading to his arrest. It is not yet clear whether or not anyone will be able to claim the reward, as the caller who reported the murderer sleeping in the truck was actually a security worker in the area, and therefore was just doing their job.
Stephenson will now have to face charges for the 2014 murder, and will be questioned in connection to Kiah's homicide later on in the week.