Murderer, serial escaper, captured in New Brunswick

CanWest News Service
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TORONTO - RCMP officers in New Brunswick have apprehended a murderer and serial prison escapee who is one of the most wanted men in the United States.

TORONTO - RCMP officers in New Brunswick have apprehended a murderer and serial prison escapee who is one of the most wanted men in the United States.

Richard Lee McNair, 48, has been on the U.S Marshals 15 Most Wanted List ever since he mailed himself out of a Louisiana penitentiary more than a year ago.

Investigators say McNair packed himself into a pallet of mailbags scheduled for delivery outside of the prison.

The fugitive was serving three life sentences for murder, attempted murder and burglary in small-town North Dakota. His story has repeatedly been featured on Americas Most Wanted.

A constable and his buddy caught him, said Vern Erck, the North Dakota sheriff who originally investigated McNair for murdering a trucker during a 1987 robbery.

Its the best thing thats happened in my career in 20 years. Im in my last term as sheriff and this is one of the things I wanted to see come down before I retired. Im just elated.

Erck has already asked the United States Marshals Service whether he can fly up to New Brunswick as an honorary deputy marshal and help return McNair to the United States.

Erck said the two men caught McNair in Campbellton, N.B., Thursday morning.

Sgt. Derek Strong of the New Brunswick RCMP confirmed the arrest but released few details. He was arrested by one of our members shortly before noon today in Campbellton, Strong said.

Authorities have long believed McNair has been hiding out in Canada.

An RCMP officer in Fredericton called Erck at the Ward County Sheriffs office to inquire whether there were any outstanding warrants on the man they apprehended, who identified himself as McNair and explained he was wanted.

A couple of young guys chased his butt down and cuffed and stuffed him, is the way it sounds. He took off running again, Erck said. I told them to get some extra cuffs and keep a guy on him. Hell slip out.

Organizations: RCMP, United States Marshals Service

Geographic location: New Brunswick, United States, North Dakota TORONTO Louisiana Campbellton Canada Fredericton Ward

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