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Gainesville-based U.S. Marshals Task Force arrests Marion County fugitive in Connecticut after 10 years on the run

BY JENNIFER CABRERA

On Saturday, March 5, 2022, the U.S. Marshals-led Florida Caribbean Regional Fugitive Task Force (FCRFTF), with help from local agencies, located Benjamin Quinn, 37, in Bethlehem, Connecticut, where he was living under the name “Michael Waters.” Quinn was arrested on an outstanding warrant for two counts of sexual battery on a person under 12 years of age, a capital felony.  

The U.S. Marshal Service FCRFTF, based in Gainesville, is made up of federal, state, and local agencies. Participants in the task force include Alachua County Sheriff’s Office, Gainesville Police Department, Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Marion County Sheriff’s Office, Levy County Sheriff’s Office, Chiefland Police Department, and Citrus County Sheriff’s Office. The USMS FCRFTF focuses on finding fugitives with state and federal warrants that are wanted for violent crimes. 

In March 2012, MCSO Major Crimes detectives began investigating a report that Quinn had repeatedly sexually battered a 10-year-old child, beginning when the child was only eight years old. After suffering nearly two years of ongoing abuse, the victim told her family, who then confronted Quinn. Quinn fled from the area, leaving behind only a note in which he apologized for what he did, stated he was sick, and advised he needed help. Detectives promptly obtained a warrant for Quinn’s arrest but were unable to locate him.

After a long fugitive investigation, FDLE Special Agent Yolanda Carbia, a former Gainesville Police Department (GPD) officer, determined that Quinn was living on a farm in Bethlehem, Connecticut, under the false name of “Michael Waters.” Special Agent Carbia and MCSO Detective Cody Blair, with the assistance of the U.S. Marshal Service and the Connecticut State Police, located Quinn on the farm and placed him under arrest. 

“With the cooperation of these law enforcement agencies, we were able to bring justice to this victim and her family,” stated Sheriff Billy Woods. “Quinn is an individual who preyed on the innocence of a child, and with the hard work of the detectives and all agencies involved, he is now behind bars where he cannot harm another child.”

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“FDLE takes great pride in its federal, state, and local partnerships,” said FDLE Jacksonville Special Agent in Charge Matt Walsh. “It is through these collaborations that a violent offender was located—hiding in plain sight—under an assumed identity. Quinn will no longer be a threat to society. Capturing Quinn provides answers to the victim and victim’s family. It also demonstrates the capacity that law enforcement agencies have through teamwork.”

Investigators believe there could be additional victims in this case. If you have additional information about Benjamin Quinn, please contact FDLE at (386) 462-9975 or Marion County Sheriff’s Office at (352) 732-9111.

At this time, Quinn is being held at the Connecticut State Department of Corrections awaiting extradition back to Marion County to face two counts of sexual battery on a person under 12 years of age.