Persistence pays off in LCSO arrest of New Jersey felony offender

Boatner, Fornice Gary

A man wanted for a vehicular homicide case in New Jersey was arrested in Cleveland on Saturday, May 28, through a joint effort by the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office, Houston Police Department, Harris County Sheriff’s Office and New Jersey State Police.

According to a statement from the sheriff’s office, the arrest of 31-year-old Fornice Gary Boatner came after the Liberty County Sheriff’s Dispatch Center was called and advised of a case in which the Houston Police Department was tracking a 2007 silver Dodge Ram that was being driven by Boatner.

Through information gained by the Houston Police Department, it was thought the wanted vehicle was at a location near CR 3314 in the north side of the county near Cleveland. Armed with this information, Deputy Pelliegrino, along with Sgt. Kenneth Taylor, made several runs in that vicinity but were unable to locate the Dodge Ram.

Later, Houston Police Sgt. Kang, who was working the Houston end of this investigation for New Jersey, contacted the LCSO dispatcher and advised the Dodge Ram was now thought to displaying paper dealer license plates and had obvious front end damage and a cracked windshield. Follow-up information indicated the truck was at a residence on CR 3317A in the Cleveland area.

Both Dep. Pelliegrino and Sgt. Taylor then made a run on this new location and found the truck parked at this residence. Contact was made with the residents at this home who told Pelliegrino and Taylor the truck belonged to their son, Fornice Boatner, who was in the house. They reportedly had been told by their son that the front end damage to his truck has been caused by hitting a deer while in Memphis. The parents also told authorities they had sent Boatner money just a few days ago to have the windshield to his truck replaced while in Memphis.

While in the process of this interview with Boatner and his parents, Dep. Pellegrino was advised by the dispatcher that Boatner had an outstanding warrant for his arrest from the Harris County Sheriff’s Office for a Hit and Run wreck that occurred in 2014. At this point, Boatner was placed under arrest without incident on the basis of the Harris County warrant. Boatner reportedly refused to talk further to the deputies.

Boatner was placed in the Liberty County Jail on the Harris County warrant and also held for the New Jersey State Police.

“This persistence and joint coordination between the LCSO Patrol Investigators and dispatchers, Houston Police Department Detective, Harris County Sheriff’s Office and the New Jersey State Police resulted in a felony offender being taken off the streets within a matter of two days. Details of the New Jersey Vehicular Homicide case are not available but will be followed up by that agency,” said LCSO Capt. Ken DeFoor.

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