Fugitive arrested after trying to escape through crawl space, disrupting church service in Stafford County


STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) – A wanted Spotsylvania man was arrested Saturday after breaking up a church service during a police foot chase at a Fredericksburg mall.

Shortly before 7:45 p.m., a Stafford County Sheriff’s Office deputy responded to the Olde Forge Mall just outside of Fredericksburg.

The Emergency Communications Center had received a tip that Troy Longwell, 52, was at a beauty salon in the shopping complex and had active warrants. The tip also indicated that Longwell would run and hide.

Police say they surrounded the shopping complex and spoke to the business owner who consented to deputies checking the beauty salon. During their search of the business, deputies noticed an out of place ceiling tile. Upon inspection, they observed a human leg in the ceiling crawl space.

The deputies gave the order to surrender but the figure disappeared further down the crawl space to a connected business. Two officers rushed into the adjacent suite to find a working church. Longwell was soon found – shirtless and breathless – after falling into a room behind the nave and entering active duty.

Longwell was detained in the middle of the church service. Police also found what they believed to be a controlled substance in the ceiling where Longwell had been hiding.

Troy Longwell (Courtesy of Stafford County Sheriff’s Office)

Longwell was detained and served seven terms as active capias of Fredericksburg, King George, Spotsylvania and Fredericksburg. He was charged with possession of a controlled substance and obstruction. Longwell was held without bail at Rappahannock Regional Jail.


About Author

Comments are closed.