OAKLAND -- Twenty-five violent fugitives, including five suspected of murder and four of attempted murder, were rounded up around the Bay Area in a two-week operation led by the U.S Marshals Service, officials announced Tuesday.
Even though some of those arrested were wanted for crimes in other cities, the operation was a direct response to violence in Oakland, said Don O'Keefe, U.S. marshal for the Northern District of California.
Those arrested were among "the worst of the worst," O'Keefe said, vowing future operations.
Many of the arrests, which happened between Aug. 6 and Aug. 16, were in Oakland. But others were made in Hayward, San Leandro, Daly City, San Francisco and Salinas. Five guns were also recovered.
One murder suspect, Thomas Walker Jr., 24, who was wanted for an October 2011 triple killing at a San Leandro tattoo party, was arrested Aug. 9 in Hayward. Another murder suspect, Anthony Boyd, 27, wanted for a Dec. 25 killing in West Oakland, was arrested Aug. 10 in Hayward.
Two 12-member teams including marshals, Oakland police and state Department of Corrections agents, among others, took part.
O'Keefe said marshals are continually asking Oakland police to give them the names of their most-wanted suspects so they can help find and arrest them. "No matter how far a violent offender flees, he is not out of our jurisdiction," O'Keefe said.
Melinda Haag, U.S. attorney for the Northern District of California, said Oakland is a "great city." But citing the recent killings of an 8-year-old girl, a 16-month-old boy and his father, and 12 people being shot over the weekend, she said "the level of violence ... is intolerable."
That is why federal law enforcement is doing everything it can to provide manpower and other assistance to Oakland police, she said. "We take our responsibility to Oakland seriously, as demonstrated today."
Nancy O'Malley, Alameda County district attorney, whose office will prosecute many of those arrested, said having such a "united front" of law enforcement agencies "will keep our communities safe." When violent suspects are arrested and prosecuted "we do see a dip in crime," she said.
Interim Oakland Chief of Police Sean Whent expressed his gratitude to O'Keefe, Haag and O'Malley "for all their help and efforts to make Oakland a safer city. By combining our efforts we will be more successful in creating a safer environment."