After seven months as a fugitive Ricky Murph Jr. is behind bars and the lure of reward money may have led to his capture.


After seven months as a fugitive Ricky Murph Jr. is behind bars and the lure of reward money may have led to his capture.

 

Carter County Sheriff Ken Grace said Murph was netted at a Dallas convenience store about 4:30 p.m. Thursday by members of the U.S. Marshall’s Fugitive Task Force. Grace said he had no immediate information about whether Murph’s arrest included new charges in Dallas County. Regardless of his charge status in Texas, Murph will be detained in Dallas County pending extradition to Ardmore.

 

Whether information concerning Murph’s whereabouts was gained by someone seeking reward cash is not known. However, Sgt. Kevin Norris, Ardmore Police Department Criminal Investigation Division, said Wednesday his office received an inquiry.

 

“We got a call from someone who said they knew where he was and asked who they needed to call. The caller was directed to the U.S. Marshalls office. At this point I don’t know if the caller actually contacted the U.S. Marshall’s or whether the caller was interested in the rewards,” Norris told The Ardmoreite about 5:30 p.m. Thursday.

 

Ironically the lure of reward money was what led to Murph’s co-defendant, Dylan Roberson’s recent capture.

 

Ingle managed to subdue and arrest Murph without further incident.

 

Out on bond pending the outcome of that case Murph was snagged in a second cocaine undercover investigation on Nov. 23 when officers raided a Burton Street residence. Murph and Roberson, also known as Dylan Knight, were two of five adults and a teenager targeted in that investigation. Murph again attempted to escape, but was subdued within minutes when pursuing officers found him hiding inside a nearby house which was under construction.

 

Roberson, fled Card’s courtroom in June 14  just seconds before a jury returned a guilty verdict againt him. He was captured Oct. 1 by U.S. Marshall’s in Oklahoma City. At the time of his arrest he was found in possession of crack cocaine and an illegal firearm. Charges related to those alleged crimes have been filed against him in Oklahoma County.

 

Ironically Roberson was returned to Card’s courtroom Tuesday where he was sentenced to the jury’s recommendation of life without parole for trafficking crack cocaine. He also pleaded guilty to charges of possession of crack cocaine which came from his February arrest, while he was free on bond in the trafficking case. The guilty plea was the result of a plea bargain with District Attorney Craig Ladd.

 

Roberson exchanged his guilty plea for an additional 25 year prison term in an agreement with Ladd, who promised not to prosecute him on the “bail jumping” charge.

 

Associate District Judge Lee Card issued a warrant from Murph’s arrest when he failed to appear for trial March 29 on charges of trafficking in illegal drugs (crack cocaine), unlawful possession of controlled dangerous substance and unlawful distribution of CDS.  Murph had been free on a $100,000 bond pending the outcome of that trail.

 

Card issued a second warrant for Murph’s arrest when he failed to appear for trial June 15 on additional trafficking CDS (crack cocaine) and unlawful possession of CDS charges. Bonds attached to the arrest warrants were $1 million.

 

Murph was arrested  Aug. 15, 2009, during a joint investigation conducted by APD narcotics officers and investigators and the Carter County Sheriff’s Department. He was taken into custody at a residence located in the unit block of H Street NE, near the HFV Wilson community Center. When officers attempted to arrest Murph, following an undercover buy, he tried to escape. Sgt. Kevin Norris said Sgt. Keith Ingle, who now leads the APD Narcotics Unit,  “followed right behind Murph and saw him attempt to discard what was later identified as 8 grams of crack cocaine and more than $2,000.”