Unsolved Mysteries: Authorities Reportedly "Closing in" on Escaped Fugitive Featured in Netflix Series
Authorities are reportedly nearing the apprehension of escaped fugitive Lester Eubanks, whose [...]
Authorities are reportedly nearing the apprehension of escaped fugitive Lester Eubanks, whose story was popularized after it was revealed in an October episode of Netflix's Unsolved Mysteries reboot series. NBC News cites an official with the U.S. Marshals Service who revealed to the outlet that "they are now closing in on" Eubanks, who is believed to be in the Los Angeles area, having previously escaped custody of authorities in Ohio back in 1973. Eubanks was convicted of the murder of fourteen-year-old with his death sentence commuted to life imprisonment. The disappearance of Eubanks on that date came eight years after he was arrested for the murder of Mary Ellen Deener.
The episode of Unsolved Mysteries featuring Eubanks story drew much attention from fans and viewers of the series as the means of his escape simply didn't add up. At some point in his stay in the Ohio Penitentiary, Eubanks became enrolled in an honor/trustee program and was allowed the opportunity to leave the prison on several occasions. At one point in 1973, Eubanks took part in a Christmas shopping excursion through this program. While all the other inmates returned to the pick-up location, having shopped unsupervised, Eubanks did not, and hasn't been seen since that day.
The USMS established the 15 Most Wanted Fugitive Program in 1983 to prioritize investigation & apprehension of some of the country’s most dangerous fugitives. Rewards up to $25,000 are offered for information leading to arrests. Submit a tip. https://t.co/G9Ve0bpFv2. pic.twitter.com/BJG0jeEUpz— U.S. Marshals (@USMarshalsHQ) February 25, 2021
Authorities featured in the episode of Unsolved Mysteries focusing on Eubanks theorized that his escape was a pre-planned event and coordinated with persons that had been visiting him in the prison. Eubanks' escape was featured on an episode of America's Most Wanted as well in 1994 when a source called in after seeing his story and reported him as living in the Los Angeles area.
It's thought Eubanks never left however as NBC Los Angeles reports "recently obtained photographs that allegedly show Eubanks working and socializing with people in Los Angeles County" were reviewed by the Marshals Service and are the reason they've begun to focus their investigation on the area. The Marshals are offering a $50,000 reward for any information that leads to the arrest of Eubanks, currently featured on the 15 Most Wanted List.
The success and popularity of the Netflix reboot of Unsolved Mysteries has lead to multiple featured stories gain traction with active investigations again, but so far no official "updates" have come. Like the original TV series, the new version of Unsolved Mysteries intends to put addendums in place for the new episodes should any relevant updates come to pass (just like the original series.