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Air Force, British authorities nab Parrott

ROYAL AIR FORCE LAKENHEATH, England -- Airman Basic Jeremy Parrott, who was convicted of receiving and possessing child pornography in July 2008 and escaped custody in September, was apprehended in Ipswich June 3.

He was apprehended when law enforcement officials followed up on a tip received following the airing of his story on the British television show "Crimewatch".

United States and British law enforcement agencies worked closely together as part of a joint operation planned prior to the show's airing. This joint effort and quick reaction led to the successful apprehension.

"The apprehension of Airman Parrott is a testament to both the Air Force and British authority's dedication and commitment to ensuring public safety and security," said Lt. Col. Terry Bullard, U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigation, Detachment 512 commander.

Lt. Col. Bullard and his OSI detachment led the team, which was credited with the apprehension. The team was comprised of Airmen from the 48th and 100th Security Forces Squadrons, officers from the Suffolk Constabulary and personnel from the United Kingdom's Serious and Organized Crime Agency.

Lt. Col. Bullard confirmed that the apprehension was in a public place, but further details couldn't be released due to the nature of the operation. He also explained that British and U.S. law enforcement personnel were on scene and there were no incidents during the apprehension.
The U.S. Air Force will distribute the $10,000 reward to those whose tips led to the capture, but identifying the sources could jeopardize their safety.

As for Airman Parrott's future, he will remain confined as part of his original conviction. He is also awaiting the outcome of the investigation and possible legal charges, which will be determined by command and legal authorities.

"Airman Basic Parrott has all the rights that anyone subject to the Uniform Code of Military Justice has," said Major Todd Sherwood, a 48th Fighter Wing assistant staff judge advocate and chief of the Military Justice. "As such, we cannot speculate about what charges may or may not be under consideration. When and if charges are referred to a court-martial, the charges will be made public."

As for how Airman Parrott spent his eight months prior to being apprehended, all that has been publicly released was sent out in a June 2 press release from the Crimewatch television show.

According to the document, shortly after Airman Parrott escaped Sept. 24, he tried to ask a friend for help but was refused. He escaped before authorities could respond. In October, he was then spotted in a homeless shelter in Bury St. Edmunds. He was using the alias William McGonagle, and was pretending to be mute to mask his American accent. He is thought to have concealed and supported himself by living within the homeless community until his apprehension.

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