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U.S. Marshals celebrate 225 years of service

Current Marshal badge.

Current Marshal badge.

Badge from the 1880s.

Badge from the 1880s.

Nation’s oldest federal law enforcement agency continues to build on its legendary origins and extraordinary reputation

The U.S. Marshals Service celebrated its 225th anniversary on Wednesday, September 24. As the nation’s oldest, most versatile federal law enforcement agency, it continues to build on its legacy of steadfast service and its unique position in the country’s federal justice system.

Michigan Senate Resolution No. 175 has proclaimed September 24, 2014, as U.S. Marshals Day in the State of Michigan

The U.S. Marshals Service’s legendary origins began in 1789 when the nation’s first president appointed the first U.S. Marshals. There have been 23 Marshals appointed in the Western District of Michigan, the first one in 1863 was appointed by President Lincoln according to Marshal Munoz.

“When President George Washington appointed the first 13 U.S. Marshals Sept. 24, 1789, his pen marked the creation of an agency that has since played a role in virtually every facet of the nation’s federal judiciary during times of crisis and times of peace,” said U.S. Marshals Service Director Stacia Hylton.

“From upholding the law in our untamed western territories to tracking and apprehending the most notorious fugitives, the U.S. Marshals Service has been committed to answering the call of our great nation for justice,” said Hylton.

Some of those challenges to justice included responding to the Whiskey Rebellion under the command of President Washington in 1794; keeping the trains moving during the Pullman railroad strikes in 1894; enforcing court orders related to civil rights and the desegregation of the South during the 1960s, protecting witnesses who testified against organized crime, and securing all high-threat federal trials involving domestic and international terrorism such as the World Trade Center and Oklahoma City bombing trials, and most recently, the Boston Marathon bombing trial.

“As we mark 225 years of service, our men and women stand ready to continue that commitment,” said Hylton.

Today, the U.S. Marshals Service is a force of 5,400 deputies and civil servants who carry out operational and administrative duties as varied as apprehending fugitives, housing and transporting prisoners, protecting witnesses and federal judges, and managing and selling seized assets.

Most notably, the Marshals Service is the federal government’s primary agency for conducting fugitive investigations. Working with its law enforcement partners at the federal, state, and local levels, the Marshals apprehend more federal fugitives than all other federal law enforcement agencies combined. The U.S. Marshals arrested more than 110,000 fugitives during fiscal year 2013.

“This is a proud day in the storied history of America’s oldest law enforcement agency. The Marshals Service has been an integral part of many significant events that have shaped our country. As our country has evolved, so has the Marshals Service. Our fugitive task forces’ use of technology and investigative expertise has made the idea of fugitives escaping justice nearly impossible,” Marshal Munoz said.

The Marshals’ two joint fugitive task forces in Grand Rapids and Lansing arrest over 1100 federal, state, and local fugitives each year including over 100 unregistered sex offenders.  The Marshals also have the lead role in prosecuting unregistered sex offenders that cross state lines and don’t register.

Other district accomplishments include protecting the federal courts and facilities, and managing the care and transport of nearly 1000 federal prisoners each year.

“As we mark this significant milestone of 225 years, we take a moment to look back with pride on the role the Marshals Service has played in the history of our country and we stand ready to meet the challenges of today and the future,” said Marshal Munoz.


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