Federal authorities captured a Raleigh man last week in California who had been on the lam for nearly two years after he failed to register as a convicted sex offender.
U.S. Marshals arrested Russell Joseph Szkolnyj, 40, in San Diego on Tuesday after finding him inside a van near a coffee shop where he was a regular customer, according to a news release.
Nearly three years ago, on July 7, 2006, Szkolnyj pleaded guilty in Wake County to indecent liberties with a child. A 19- to 23-month active prison sentence was suspended in lieu of a three year term of supervised probation.
Szkolnyj was also ordered to complete a sexual offender program and register with the Wake County Sheriff's Office as a convicted sex offender. Investigators say that in late August of 2007, Szkolnyj fled the Raleigh area. His case was turned over to federal authorities, according to the release.
Investigators followed leads to a San Diego neighborhood. The officers, while conducting multiple interviews with residents in the neighborhood, learned that someone matching Szkolnyj's description was living in a van near a coffee shop in the area.
Szkolnyj is in custody at the San Diego Central Jail awaiting extradition back to Wake County, the U.S. Marshals Service reported.