Pasco Sheriff's Office uses Facebook to catch fugitives

Three fugitives already caught

PASCO COUNTY, Fla. - It's another day for the warrants unit in Pasco County.

They start by arresting a man wanted on drug charges, and when they found him at his home, detectives say he was breaking the law again.

"His arm was bleeding, and probation is searching the house, and they just confirmed that he was actively shooting drugs as we were approaching the house," said Detective Pat Moccaldi.

The warrants units now has a new way to get information that can help them catch criminals.

Just last week, the sheriff's office started featuring a fugitive of the day on the agency Facebook page.

It's already resulted in three arrests.

Two of them are directly credited to tips from Facebook.

"We are getting tips as vague as 'I saw this person at the Wal-Mart at Ridge and 19 the other day.'  We are getting tips on who they are hanging out with or who their new boyfriend or girlfriend is that we may not have known," said Sgt. Dan Olds.

Fredrick Quijano was wanted for robbery, so he ended up as a fugitive of the day.

There were lots of posts under his mug shot, including one from Fredrick himself. Detectives say his post will actually help in their case against him because it shows he knew he was a fugitive.

"He was basically trying to taunt us and say that the sheriff's office didn't look for him at his house, when he wasn't staying at his house. He stays in hotels," said Olds.

Fredrick was picked up in Tampa by the US Marshall Service and is now in jail.

The Sheriff office says putting these fugitives on Facebook is the modern day version of the wanted poster.

"It seems like the easiest way to get information, because everybody is on Facebook," said Detective Monte Schuler.

There's no shortage of fugitives to feature. The sheriff's office says they've got more than 5000 outstanding felony warrants. And another two thousand for violation of probation.

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