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Convicted child molester captured in Detroit

By the CNN Wire Staff
November 1, 2011 -- Updated 1827 GMT (0227 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Richard Carl Heeringa, 55, fled after being convicted of 17 counts of sexual assault
  • Heeringa was last seen April 15, 2010
  • During his time on the run, he lived in Colorado and Michgan, authorities say

(CNN) -- A convicted child molester on the U.S. Marshals' 15 Most Wanted List has been captured, the service announced Tuesday.

Richard Carl Heeringa had not been seen since he fled Michigan in the middle of the night after being convicted of 17 counts of sexual assault on a child on April 15, 2010, said Geoff Shank, acting assistant district director of the U.S. Marshals Investigative Operations Division, in a statement.

The 55-year-old was not added to the U.S. Marshals list until July of this year.

A tip from a local citizen who recognized Heeringa led authorities to a home in Detroit, the U.S. Marshals statement said. Heeringa was captured after his identity was confirmed. Authorities learned he had been living in the home for about a year using the alias Tim Thurman, the statement said.

In 2005, Heeringa was living with a woman and her daughter in Colorado, federal authorities said. Officials believe he met the woman after being released from a prison in Michigan in 2004, where he had just finished serving a 12-year sentence for another sexual assault conviction, according to the statement

"The capture of a violent predator such as Heeringa exemplifies the coming together of numerous local, state, and federal agencies." said John Kammerzell, U.S. Marshal for the District of Colorado.

Heeringa faces more than 500 years in prison, authorities said.

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