(YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio)—Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced today that the Fugitive Safe Surrender program will expand to the Mahoning Valley beginning in 2012. DeWine made his announcement as part of a crime safety summit held at St. Dominic’s Church in Youngstown.
“I made a commitment as Ohio Attorney General not only to continue the Fugitive Safe Surrender program, but also to look into expanding it into other regions in Ohio. Today, I am pleased to announce that my office will coordinate a Fugitive Safe Surrender event in the Mahoning Valley next year,” DeWine said.
Fugitive Safe Surrender offers individuals with felony and misdemeanor warrants the ability to turn themselves in to law enforcement and have their case adjudicated, typically at a community church. The Fugitive Safe Surrender program has been a success in Cleveland since it was started by United States Marshal Pete Elliott in 2005 after a Cleveland police officer was killed. More than 34,000 people have surrendered nationally through the program, including more than 10,000 in northern Ohio.
The Mahoning Valley Fugitive Safe Surrender event in 2012 will be the first expansion of the program under Attorney General DeWine. In March, DeWine announced Fugitive Safe Surrender would continue under the Attorney General’s Office after federal support was cut for the program. Attorney General DeWine committed to explore expanding Fugitive Safe Surrender to other Ohio communities and has since hired a staff member to coordinate the program.
“Not only was there a large outpouring of support to see Fugitive Safe Surrender continue, but I heard from so many law enforcement officers, judges, mayors, clergymen, and community leaders telling me they wanted to see Fugitive Safe Surrender come to their communities. The program’s success has always resulted from these partners working together. The existing partnerships and the community’s dedication to safety for families are why we are bringing Fugitive Safe Surrender to the Mahoning Valley,” said DeWine.
Attorney General DeWine announced the future Mahoning Valley event at the Operation Redemption discussion held at St. Dominic’s Church in Youngstown and hosted by Father Gregory Maturi. Operation Redemption was launched by the city of Youngstown as a follow-up to last year's Youngstown Safety Summit. Invited panelists to today’s discussion were BCI Superintendent Tom Stickrath; Youngstown Mayor Jay Williams; Youngstown City Prosecutor Jay Macejko; Youngstown Chief of Police Jimmy Hughes; and Mahoning County Prosecutor Paul Gains.
Lisa Hackley 614-466-3840
Eve Mueller 614-466-3840