The FBI's "Ten Most Wanted Fugitives" list has been in existence since March 14, 1950.
A reporter for the International News Service (the predecessor to United Press International) asked the Bureau for the names and descriptions of the "toughest guys" the Bureau would like to capture. The resulting story generated so much publicity and had so much appeal that late FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover implemented the "Ten Most Wanted Fugitives" program.
The first person to be placed on the list was Thomas James Holden, wanted for the murder of his wife, her brother, and her stepbrother.
Since its inception, 494 fugitives have been on the "Top Ten" list, and 464 have been apprehended or located. Visit http://www.fbi.gov/wanted/topten to see who's on the list right now.
Did you know...?
- 152 fugitives have been captured/located as a result of citizen cooperation.
- Two fugitives were apprehended as a result of visitors on an FBI tour.
- The shortest amount of time spent on the "Top Ten" list was two hours, by Billy Austin Bryant in 1969.
- The longest amount of time spent on the "Top Ten" list is over 26 years by Victor Manuel Gerena.
- Nine fugitives were arrested prior to publication and release, but are still considered as officially on the list.
- The oldest person to be placed on the list was 69-year-old James J. Bulger, who was added in August of 1999. He was captured this week in an apartment complex in Santa Monica, California after being on the run since 1994.
Find out more about the history of the FBI's most wanted at http://www.fbi.gov/wanted/topten/ten-most-wanted-fugitives-faq