Law enforcement arrest 40 people in Operation Washout

Published: May. 2, 2022 at 7:55 PM CDT
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - The U.S. Marshals Office said it arrested 40 people four weeks into “Operation Washout”, an effort between federal, state, and local agencies to arrest violent fugitives and sex offenders in Black Hawk County.

According to the U.S. Marshals, the operation is the first operation focused on Black Hawk County in recent history and is still ongoing after four weeks. The U.S. Marshals said more than half of those arrested are involved in organized crime or a criminal gang.

13 firearms have been seized and more than 900 grams of drugs were confiscated as well, according to a press release. Five people, who the Marshals said are violent crime fugitives, likely left Iowa.

Phil Hartung, who is a supervisory deputy U.S. Marshall, said the next phase of the operation is to find those five people.

“As we move into the next phase of this operation, the Northern Iowa Fugitive Task Force will work to identify locations on these known fugitives and ensure they are brought to justice,” he said. “With fugitive Task Forces located in every major city throughout the United States, the U.S. Marshals have a network in place ready to act on information.”

Chris Barther, who is the acting U.S. Marshall for the Northern District of Iowa, said more than 10 years of work from a violent crime unit within the Waterloo Police Department made the operation possible. He said the Marshals can provide more resources for smaller local agencies like more funding, manpower, and equipment.

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