Fugitive from Oklahoma arrested in Ft. Bend County
HOUSTON (KTRK) -- The manhunt for a dangerous fugitive from Oklahoma came to an end after he was arrested Thursday morning in Ft. Bend County.
It all happened at around 8am Thursday because of an alert citizen who called in a suspicious person walking down Farmer Road. She told dispatchers the man had a beard and longer hair than seen in the photo the FBI had circulated of Dyer in the neighborhood on Wednesday. But she felt it might be him.
"He's walking with his head down. He was walking through the side tree line where people jog. It just looks very unususal," the caller said. "Boots and jeans and no shirt. And his jeans look like he's been through the mud and back."
Deputies responded and say they found Charles Alan Dyer, of Duncan, Oklahoma walking on the side of the roadway in the 9700 block of Mason Road near Highway 99. That location is close to Oakland Elementary School, which was briefly put on lockdown, and Kids R Kids daycare.
A deputy ordered Dyer to the ground at gunpoint and handcuffed him, authorities say. Fort Bend Chief Deputy Craig Brady says Dyer first gave the officer a false name, but then the deputy located an ID on him with the name Charles Dyer. Deputies say he then admitted who he was and was taken into custody without incident and transported to the Fort Bend Co. Jail.
"Like a lot of cases the reason this guy is in custody -- in addition to all the efforts by law enforcement -- was a concerned citizen. He looked suspicious to that citizen in that his clothes were dirty; he looked like he'd been living outside and he fit the basic description of the fugitive. And that's the same thing the deputy observed," said Chief Brady at a press conference.
He said Dyer did not have a shirt on and was carrying a backpack and a water jug but wasn't armed.
The FBI says a fingerprint check at the jail confirmed Dyer's identity.
Dyer, 31, is a former Marine who's accused of raping a young girl in his home state. He was wanted by the FBI in Oklahoma City for unlawful flight to avoid prosecution.
According to officials, Dyer was set to appear in court August 15 on the felony child rape charge, but he never showed up.
Federal investigators were led to Austin County this weekend. They searched for Dyer all day Sunday to no avail.
Sheriff's deputies in Fort Bend County joined the manhunt Monday after several Wallis-area residents reported that a man matching Dyer's description was knocking on doors asking for a ride to Houston.
After the arrest, one of the deputies said he told Dyer that he really gave them a run for their money, to which Dyer reportedly responded, "Sorry for the inconvenience."
Dyer had apparently been hiding in the brush and living along the Brazos River for five or six days.
"It's our understanding that was living along the river during the day and coming out at night," Chief Brady said. "He was searching for something to eat and drink at night."
We spoke with FBCSO Deputy Goodrich who arrested Dyer and he told us Dyer was very tired and dirty.
"He was just tired. He was wore out," said Deputy Jeremy Goodrich of the Ft. Bend Co. Sheriff's Office. "He was wet and muddy. He's been in the water and out of the water."
As far as the arrest, the deputy told us he was just doing his job.
Deputies say Dyer told them that searchers had gotten within 10 meters of him when he was hiding the last few days, but he somehow still eluded them.
"He made some statements when he was in the back of the car that they had been really close. He had been hiding," said Deputy Goodrich.
He says Dyer told him he came out of hiding today because he was hot and hungry. He apparently hadn't eaten in four days.
Investigators say Dyer had actually gone to a nearby Sonic to get a cherry limeade before he was arrested.
Dyer was found unarmed, but he told officers that he did have a weapon at one point, but discarded it. Chief Brady said Dyer was carrying more than $1,000 in cash and a GPS.
Chief Brady said they don't know why Dyer came to Texas and ended up here in the Houston area. He also said they had no information as to whether anyone was aiding Dyer during his time on the run.
In a hearing Thursday afternoon with Judge Pedro Ruiz, Dyer waived extradition so the FBI and US Marshals will be bringing him back to Oklahoma.
Eyewitness News also learned that Dyer, a former Marine, had attended an event hosted a controversial group called Oath-keepers. The organization includes current and former law enforcement and military who take an oath to "rise up against tyrannical government." However, the founder of the Houston group says Dyer wasn't a member.
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