HANCOCK COUNTY – Officials with the Hancock County Sheriff’s Department said a suspect wanted on a warrant who was at large for most of the day Wednesday was taken into custody and is now in the Marion County Jail.
An official with the Sheriff’s Department received a tip that the wanted man was at a residence in Indianapolis, and it eventually led to the arrest.
Earlier Wednesday morning, the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office received a tip that Russell A. Collins, 48, Indianapolis, a wanted person with multiple warrants, was at a residence near county roads 400 West and 100 South, just outside of New Palestine, officials said in a press release.
Deputies arrived and spoke to residents of the house who confirmed the suspect was there. At some point during the encounter the suspect fled the rear of the house into a heavily wooded area, Capt. Robert Harris, public information officer said.
Due to the suspect being wanted on warrants for multiple charges, the Hancock County Joint Tactical Team (HCJTT) was called to the scene. The Indiana State Police responded with K-9 and a helicopter. The Sugar Creek Fire Department also assisted with a thermal image unit to search for the suspect. An extensive search of the residence, surrounding woods, and numerous outbuildings in the area, did not locate the suspect.
The search was called off around 11:30 a.m. but officers remained in the area. The suspect however was apprehended Wednesday afternoon in Indianapolis by local officials there.
Harris said HCSD corporal Mark Galbraith obtained a possible address in Indianapolis where Collins could be located later in the day. He passed the information on to officials from the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department. They went to the residence, located the suspect and took him into custody around 4:45 p.m.
“Corporal Galbraith did a wonderful job, and it was another great example of our positive working relationships and collaborations with other departments,” Harris said. “Thankfully the criminal is now behind bars and the public is safer for it.”
Harris noted officials are not 100% certain Collins was even in the county and believe there is a chance the two females who were at the house near New Palestine may not have been completely truthful.
“He may have been there and escaped or he may have never been there at all,” Harris said.
According to court documents, Collins, who is listed as living in the 5000 block of E. 30th Street in Indianapolis, was wanted for multiple crimes there from violent incidents in March and February.
Records show Collins is facing five different Level 5 felonies for intimidation using a deadly weapon, criminal confinement with bodily injury and domestic battery by means of a deadly weapon. Collins is also facing nine other Level 6 felonies for domestic battery, intimidation, confinement, kidnapping and strangulation. Collins also has one Class A Misdemeanor charge of intimidation.
The most serious crimes against Collins carry up to six years in prison. However, Harris noted one of the people in the home where Collins was allegedly at in Hancock County is one of the victims in the case against him. A no-contact order was issued just last Thursday in Marion County Superior Court 30 where he is set to face charges, court records state.
According to court documents, the case was opened against Collins on April 27 when a warrant was issued for his arrest.
Marion County court records show Collins has a lengthy criminal past that includes 11 different criminal cases opened against him for crimes like battery, confinement, theft and burglary.
Nearby New Palestine Intermediate and New Palestine Junior High Schools were put on lockdown for a while Wednesday morning until police gave an “all clear” before lunch.