Image May Lead To Capture Of Man Who Killed Mansfield Child

  • 8/13/2019 2:56:11 PM
  • Sartaj Singh
  • Local News

MANSFIELD, OH - A digitially enhanced image could be the key to cracking a missing fugitive case with ties to the Mansfield area. 

Lester Eubanks was serving a life sentence for the murder of 14-year-old Mary Ellen Deener of Mansfield, Ohio. On December 7th, 1973, Eubanks was taken to a Columbus shopping center by prison officials. The officials allowed him to shop unescorted as a reward for good behavior. 

Eubanks, however, failed to return to his scheduled pick-up location. He was then reported as an escapee and is still on the run to this day. 

The U.S Marshals have added Lester Eubanks to their 15 Most Wanted fugitive list in an attempt to end his 40-plus years on the lam. 

A new digitally enchanced image may show what Eubanks currently looks like. The Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children are hoping that this image can lead to Eubank's capture. 

"While the Eubanks' case is designated as a cold case, I want to assure the public our investigation into his whereabouts is very active," David Anderson, U.S Marshals Service Deputy Director, said in a press release back in December. "I have total confidence in our deputies and our law enforcement partners who are determined to make sure Eubanks' last days are spent in a prison cell where justice intended it."

U.S Marshals believe that Eubanks is alive and living under the alias Victor Young. Over the years, investigative leads placed the long-time fugitive in Michigan and California, but his whereabouts remain a mystery. 

On November 14th, 1965, Eubanks shot and bludgeoned to death Mary Ellen Deener of Mansfield, Ohio. Law enforcement at the time stated that it was an attempted rape. 

Authorities quickly identified Eubanks as the offender and proceeded to arrest and charge him with first-degree murder while perpetrating rape. On May 25th, 1966, a jury found Eubanks guilty of the crimes and sentenced him to death. 

In 1972, Eubanks' death sentence was commuted to life in prison without the possibility of parole. 

"The U.S Marshals are not deterred by the passage of time when it comes to cases like this one," Peter Elliot, U.S Marshal of the Northern District of Ohio, said. "We are fueled by one thing, and that is justice for 14-year old Mary Ellen Deener of Mansfield, Ohio, the innocent victim in this case."

Authorities that worked the case state that they still think about the overall case to this day. 

"I think about this case every day and the little girl who was killed," David Siler, Deputy U.S Marshal, said. "In law enforcement, there are cases that keep you up at night, this is one of those cases."

Eubanks, 75-years-old, is a 5-foot-11 black male with black hair and brown eyes. At the time of his disappearance, he weighed approximately 175 pounds. Other unique physical characteristics include a mole under his left eye. He may be using the alias Victor Young to hide his true identity. In 2017, the U.S Marshals released an age progression photo of Eubanks. 

"Lester Eubanks has had a lot of time on the lam," Siler stated. "Fugitives on the run as long as Eubanks tend to use that time to change their appearance, use aliases, and even start new lives. He literally could be hiding in plain sight. This is why we are asking citizens to be vigilant and contact us with any information they believe will help us apprehend him."

Anyone with information is urged to contact the nearest U.S Marshals office or the U.S Marshals Service Communications Center at 1-800-336-0102. You can also contact the NOVFTF at 1-866-4WANTED (1-866-492-6833). You can also send an anonymous text by sending the keyword "WANTED" to TIP411 (847411). 

Reward money is available and tipsters may remain anonymous. 

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