Houston man on Most Wanted Fugitives list captured

Joel Burt Thompkins, 48, was captured and arrested in New York on August 20, 2010. He was wanted for capital murder and failure to register as a sex offender. The murder warrant was out of Harris County, and the failure to register warrant was out of Dallas County.

August 24, 2010 8:58:41 AM PDT
A Houston man who was added to the Texas Top 10 Most Wanted Fugitives list just two weeks ago has been captured in New York, according to the Texas attorney general.

After receiving information from Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott's Fugitive Unit, officers with the New York Police Department tracked down and arrested Joel Burt Thompkins, 48, last Friday.

The arrest stems from a warrant that was issued by the Harris County Sheriff's Office. Thompkins, who goes by the name "Ghost," was wanted in connection with the murder of a woman at the Luxor Apartments on June 4, 2010. The woman, who knew Thompkins, was beaten to death with a fire extinguisher and then stabbed. Her vehicle was stolen, but has since been recovered.

He is also wanted by authorities in Dallas County, where he failed to comply with mandatory sex offender registration requirements. According to the Texas Department of Public Safety, Thompkins was previously arrested in Dallas multiple times from 1979 to 1991. Those arrests stemmed from sexual assault, burglary of a habitation, dangerous drugs, robbery and evading arrest charges.

In addition to his crimes in Texas, Thompkins also has a lengthy criminal history in New York. From 1987 to 2009, he was twice arrested on felony firearms charges and was the subject of multiple misdemeanor arrests for possession of controlled substance and burglary.

The public should not try to apprehend members of the Texas Top 10 Most Wanted, as these criminals are considered dangerous.


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