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Office of the Attorney General News Release Archive

Friday, July 7, 2000

CORNYN ANNOUNCES CAPTURE OF FUGITIVE FEATURED ON 'AMERICA'S MOST WANTED'

East Texas man arrested in San Francisco

AUSTIN - Texas Attorney General John Cornyn and the FBI today announced the capture of Daniel Mark Gagliardo, Jr. Gagliardo, a former Texas law enforcement officer, was convicted in 1995 for the sexual assaults of three teenage boys, but fled from authorities while on bail. His case has been featured on numerous television crime programs including "America's Most Wanted." Authorities recently located and arrested Gagliardo in San Francisco and are bringing him back to Texas today.

"I am proud of the hard work of my prosecutors and investigators in bringing this fugitive to justice," said Attorney General Cornyn. "Gagliardo is now where he belongs--behind bars."

Gagliardo had been employed by the Wood County Sheriff's Department and the Whitehouse Police Department, where he was in charge of investigating juvenile crimes. In 1994, he was indicted by a Smith County Grand Jury in three separate cases with multiple counts of aggravated sexual assault and sexual assault of three teenage boys. Many of the incidents allegedly occurred while Gagliardo was on duty as a Whitehouse police officer.

The Texas Attorney General's office prosecuted Gagliardo's case. On April 20, 1995, a jury found him guilty of three counts of aggravated sexual assault and seven counts of sexual assault. Later that evening, Gagliardo, while out on bond, left the state. A federal arrest warrant was quickly issued and the FBI was called to help find Gagliardo.

The Attorney General's office spent five years trying locate the fugitive. On April 22, 2000, at the request of the Texas Attorney General's office, America's Most Wanted featured Gagliardo as a fugitive from justice. That night, a tip came in from the Atlanta, Georgia area, and law enforcement was able to verify that Gagliardo had been residing in Atlanta for two years under an assumed name. However, he fled the area immediately after the show aired.

The Attorney General's office requested that the show air an update bulletin on April 29th. That evening, a caller indicated that he had seen Gagliardo at the Ft. Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport. The caller also said that Gagliardo asked for rates to South Beach. Authorities were dispatched to find Gagliardo, however, he had fled again.

Soon after, the FBI and the Attorney General's office located a calling card number for the suspect and traced the calls made to a San Francisco hotel. FBI agents went to the hotel and arrested Gagliardo without incident. Gagliardo is scheduled to be sentenced on July 11.

Gagliardo will be returned to Texas to serve his sentence following his extradition from California. Assistant Attorney General Lisa Tanner and Special Investigator Melissa Wolfe of the Attorney General's Prosecutor's Assistance Division handled this case.

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Contact Mark Heckmann, Heather Browne, or Tom Kelley at (512) 463-2050
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