Richard Dumas, a former player for the Phoenix Suns, was among 151 arrests made around Arizona over the past three days by the U.S. Marshals Service. (Source: Maricopa County Sheriff's Office)
PHOENIX (CBS5) -
The U.S. Marshals Service has wrapped up a three-day pre-holiday sting appropriately dubbed "Operation Grinch Stopper 2" throughout Arizona in which more than 150 people were arrested, including a former Phoenix Suns player.
The operation targeted individuals with outstanding arrest warrants for property crimes, including armed robbery, larceny, burglary and any other Grinch-type crime, according to a U.S. Marshals spokesman.
There were 112 arrests made by officers from 27 agencies that participated in the operation in Maricopa and Pinal counties, and 39 arrests in and around Tucson, Yuma and Flagstaff.
Marshals said they're sending a message to the criminals and they're hoping to arrest more into the weekend.
The Marshals Service said three significant arrests were made in the Phoenix area:
Luke Cross, 29, was wanted by authorities in Boise, ID for grand theft, aggravated assault, and malicious injury to property. Cross allegedly attempted to sell a stolen bicycle at a Boise-area pawn shop. An employee recognized the bike as stolen and attempted to detain Cross; in his attempt to escape, Cross assaulted another shopper with a golf club. After fleeing the pawn shop, Cross entered a vehicle and attempted to run the pursuing employee over prior to leaving the parking lot. Cross fled to Arizona, and was located at a healthcare facility in Mesa where he was arrested without incident. Cross is being held on $250,000 bond and is pending extradition to Idaho.
Richard Dumas, 44, was wanted by Maricopa County prosecutors after being indicted for eight counts of organized retail theft. Dumas, a former Phoenix Suns basketball player, was located at the Dumas and Friends Athletic Association in Litchfield Park and arrested without incident.
Christina Burke, 44, had been on the run from Maricopa County authorities since 2009 for theft. She was sought in new charges brought against her in 2013, involving 40 counts of making false statements to obtain benefits, fraudulent schemes and theft. Burke was located and arrested in Scottsdale without incident.
"Law enforcement in Arizona is not going to put up with thieves, essentially people who are victimizing other people for their hard-earned property," said Frederick Freeman of the U.S. Marshals Service.
Last year, marshals netted 143 arrests throughout the state.
They said it was such a success, they're back at it this year.
"Operation Grinch Stopper" was created in response to the Nov. 18, 2012, shooting of Tucson Police Sgt. Robert Carpenter, said U.S. Marshals Service District of Arizona Chief Deputy Fidencio Rivera.
Carpenter was wounded during a burglary call and survived, Rivera said.
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