Police unveil most wanted

Violent offenders, drug violators among 13 sought-after fugitives

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Eleborio Lee Escobar: a Hispanic male, born Nov. 8, 1967. He has a missing left eye and a tattoo on his left arm. Offenses: felony menacing, assault and false imprisonment.

Michael Dewayne Armstrong: a black male, born Aug. 24, 1968. Offenses: failure to comply, first-degree trespassing and impersonating a police officer.

Robbie Dennis Yazzie: a white male, born May 8, 1975. Offenses: assault, violation of a court order and a bail bond violation.

Each of them -- wanted.

If these names don't ring a bell with residents, they certainly do among officers with the Craig Police Department.

Five of the fugitives listed among "Craig's most-wanted criminals," a new thread on the police department's revamped Web site, have histories of committing violent offenses.

The list of fugitives, which was posted on the site at the end of August, is comprised of 11 men and two women. They range in age from 30 to 52 years old.

Each of the suspects is presumed to be hiding from authorities in other jurisdictions, according to the Web site.

"They come and go," police Chief Walt Vanatta said. "That's part of the problem."

Vanatta said the Web site provides a venue for the public and other law enforcement agencies to keep an eye out for fugitive offenders.

The 13 people were placed on the list after officers reviewed the charges against them and how long authorities have been looking for them, among other criteria.

"Some of the patrol people thought it would be a good idea," he said.

The department will list about 10 to 13 criminals on the site, he said.

Patrol officer Sue Burns, who also serves as department Webmaster, said changes to the Web site keep the public informed and save them a trip to the police station for important information.

"I think the best part of it is the 'Craig's most-wanted' list," Burns said. She added, "That's my brand new baby on there. It's not a list of all the people (with warrants), but people who have warrants and who are hiding out in other places."

Offenses for the other eight criminals on the Web site vary from narcotics violations to traffic violations. Four of the eight remaining offenders are wanted for drug violations, according to the Web site.

Other new features on the Web site, www.craigpolice.org, include a citizen survey, online forms, updated sex offender registry and a community comment page.

The most-wanted list has not yielded any tips for the most-wanted offenders, but police officials said they're optimistic information will come.

If residents come across an offender on the list, police recommend that residents always assume the criminal is dangerous and that they not attempt to detain them.

Anyone with information on the location of offenders is encouraged to call Craig dispatch at 824-8111, Crime Stoppers at 824-3535, or e-mail the department at mostwantedtip@craigpolice.org. People sending or calling in tips may remain anonymous, police said.

Joshua Roberts can be reached at 824-7031, ext. 210, or jroberts@craigdailypress.com.

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