Investigators hope heightening the profile of the accused killer will lead to his capture Lamont Stephenson has been on the run for almost four years as a prime suspect in the October 2014 killing of his fiancee and her dog in Newark.
Now, the FBI is raising the stakes in the search for the 43-year-old.
Lamont Stephenson, left, and Olga DeJesus.
(Facebook) The FBI's Newark Division on Thursday announced Stephenson had become the 11th fugitive from its jurisdiction added to the bureau's nationwide 10 Most Wanted list.
Investigators hope the heightened profile will finally lead to Stephenson's arrest in the slaying of Olga DeJesus.
"Placing this defendant on the FBI's Ten Most Wanted List, we believe, will significantly increase the likelihood of finding him," Acting Essex County Prosecutor Theodore N.
Stephens II said in a statement Thursday.
Listen to NJ.com on Alexa, or via a daily podcast First responders found DeJesus, 40, asphyxiated along with her dog inside her apartment in the Stephen Crane Village housing project on Oct.
The Essex County Prosecutor's Office charged Stephenson with murder less than a month after DeJesus' body was found, but detectives were unable to find him.
The last sign of him was captured by surveillance camera's at Newark's Penn Station, from where investigators believe he fled the state.
Both DeJesus and Stephenson had attended Bloomfield Tech High School, and had begun an unlikely and fast-moving relationship after reconnecting at a 20th anniversary event, a classmate told NJ Advance Media at the time.
The two were engaged only shortly before her death.
In September 2017, federal prosecutors in New Jersey obtained a warrant for Stephenson's arrest on a charge of "unlawful flight to avoid prosecution" -- a move typically used to justify providing federal resources to local investigations.
The FBI says Stephenson has ties to Virginia and the Carolinas.
An affidavit filed by a special agent in support of the federal warrant reveals residents of both Virginia and South Carolina have reported possible sightings of him in those states within the past three years.
Authorities have described Stephenson as standing between 5-feet, 6-inches tall and 5-feet, 7-inches tall, and weighing approximately 220 pounds. The FBI has asked anyone with information about Stephenson's whereabouts to call 1-800-CALL-FBI (1-800-225-5324), or submit a tip online at https://tips.fbi.gov/.
Anyone attempting to provide information from outside the U.S.
should contact their nearest U.S.
embassy or consulate, authorities said.
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