Marion County fugitive captured in CA, returned to Illinois

Marion County fugitive captured in CA, returned to Illinois

MARION COUNTY — A 31-year-old Centralia man is in the Marion County Jail after being arrested in California on multiple Illinois warrants.

TJ Howard (Source: MCSO)

A $150,000 warrant was issued in February for TJ Howard after he failed to appear at his last four Marion County court dates on nearly 30 separate cases.

Howard was booked into the Marion County Jail Saturday after being transported from the Los Angeles County, California Jail where he had been held since earlier this month.

He last appeared in Marion County court on November 11, 2017. But until missing court in February, the cases were continued despite Judge Marc Kelly ruling against any further delays last March.

Howard was last arrested on Marion County charges in August 2017. At that time he was serving a sentence in the Lawrenceville prison on a 2012 felony case, with six others still outstanding.

Before his release from prison, however, Howard was charged with another criminal felony case to add to the collection, this one for alleged robbery and possession of a controlled substance.

Howard is facing seven outstanding felony cases, four DUI cases and approximately 15 traffic cases. He failed to appear in Marion County Court January 31, February 14 – when his attorney also failed to appear, February 21, and finally on February 28 when a warrant was issued for his arrest.

If he’s able to post bond on the Marion County warrant he will not be released, as he is also wanted on an outstanding Illinois Department of Corrections warrant.

Howard made headlines in 2016 after he posted $25,000 cash bond on his seventh outstanding felony case in Marion County which brought his total bond posted that year to $58,000. Since that time, however, an additional $7,500 bond was posted for the 2017 arrest, most of which was ordered forfeited to the county on April 4.