Danbury CT – The U.S. Marshals Violent Fugitive Task Force and
the Danbury Police Department this morning recovered a trafficked and
endangered child, and in the process arrested a man suspected of
Wayne Marcell, 35, of Danbury, was arrested at
8:30 a.m. today and charged with first-degree sexual assault and risk of
injury to a minor.
This investigation stems from “Operation Not
Forgotten 2021,” during which the U.S. Marshals Service Missing Child
Unit led a two-week operation in the metro Atlanta area that recovered
20 endangered missing children. Other participating agencies included
the USMS’s Southeast Regional Fugitive Task Force (SERFTF), the National
Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), and Georgia state and
“The U.S. Marshals Service in the District of
Connecticut would like to commend the hard work and dedication of all
the law enforcement professionals involved in this case,” said Lawrence
Bobnick, U.S. Marshal for the District of Connecticut. “With its
nationwide reach and investigative focus, the USMS appreciates
opportunities such as this case to rescue innocent victims from their
Operation Not Forgotten 2021, conducted in May of
this year, was the third of its kind in as many years led by the SERFTF.
As with the August 2020 operation, the SERFTF embedded members of the
Georgia Attorney General’s office into the USMS teams to consider
potential prosecutions as the marshals recovered children who were known
or suspected victims of child sexual exploitation and child sex
trafficking. Of the 20 recovered, 16 of the children were suspected
victims of sex trafficking. These missing children were considered to be
some of the most at-risk and challenging recovery cases in the area,
based on indications of high-risk factors such as victimization of child
sex trafficking, child exploitation, sexual abuse, physical abuse, and
medical or mental health conditions.
The U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) is leading the
way in a nationwide effort to recover missing and exploited children.
Since 2015, the USMS has assisted in recovering more than 1,800 missing
children. Since 2015, the USMS has contributed to the recovery of a
missing child in 75% of cases received and of those, 66% were recovered
within seven days of the Marshals providing assistance on the case.
Nationwide, more than 50 local USMS task forces are dedicated to violent
crime reduction by locating and apprehending wanted criminals. These
task forces also serve as investigation hubs for missing and exploited
juveniles throughout the country.
The Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of
2015 enhanced the U.S. Marshals’ authority to assist federal, state, and
local law enforcement with the recovery of missing, endangered, or
abducted children, regardless of whether a fugitive or sex offender was
involved. The Marshals established a Missing Child Unit to oversee and
manage the implementation of its enhanced authority under the act.
The Violent Fugitive Task Force is a team of law
enforcement officers led by U.S. Marshals from the District of
Connecticut. The task force’s objective is to seek out and arrest
violent fugitives and sexual predators. Membership agencies include
Hartford, New Haven, West Haven, Bridgeport, Norwalk, and Waterbury
Police Departments as well as ICE.
Additional information about the U.S. Marshals Service can be found
First Federal Law Enforcement Agency