Thursday, March 23, 2000

Drug suspect on the run, captured here




BY BEN L. KAUFMAN
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        A hard-running fugitive was caught in a Warren County motel bathroom late Tuesday by deputy U.S. marshals from northern and southern Ohio.

        Michael McNamee, 34, of Euclid, Ohio, had jumped bail in Cleveland, where he was charged with distribution of cocaine and being a felon in possession of a Glock 9mm semi-automatic pistol.

        Chris Riley, supervising deputy in the Cincinnati office of the marshalservice, said Mr. McNamee had been a fugitive for two months.

        Deputy Riley said Mr. McNamee seemed stunned when deputies burst in on him, not believing that deputy marshals had tracked him from Cleveland to Florida to the Mason area.

        A female companion had been lured from the room by a call from the motel operator to get her out of the way, Deputy Riley said. She was not arrested.

        Mr. McNamee was arrested Dec. 30 with $100,000 cash and about 175 grams of cocaine, Deputy Riley said, but a Summit County judge freed him after he paid 10 percent of a $500,000 bond.

        Given his prominence in the Cleveland-area drug trade, the federal Drug Enforcement Administration “adopted” the case and when Mr. McNamee fled in mid-January, he became a federal fugitive, Deputy Riley said.

        Mr. McNamee has spent more than 10 years in prisons for felonies and was ineligible to own or possess any firearm.

        Wednesday afternoon, deputy marshals from northern Ohio drove Mr. McNamee to Cleveland, where he is expected to be placed in pretrial detention as a high risk of flight if freed again.

       



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