PRINCETON — Heavy police presence in Princeton Tuesday did little to reassure citizens about a reported fugitive, but it paid off when several agencies surrounded and arrested the man they had been hunting all day.
Carlos D. Estade, 48, from Miami Beach, Fla., was taken into custody after a brief foot pursuit at approximately 7:15 p.m. near Freedom House on Elm Place by officers from Illinois State Police, Illinois State SWAT, Bureau County Sheriffs Office, Princeton Police Department and Bureau County Emergency Management Agency.
The search started the previous evening when Estade reportedly fled a traffic stop near Monterrey Mushrooms on Route 6.
By early Tuesday morning, it was reported that Estade, who wasn't yet publicly named, was seen on foot in Princeton. Both the elementary and high schools went on soft lockdown, keeping students in the building for the day.
At about 10 a.m. Tuesday, a large number of State Troopers were called to a house on Sixth Street, north of Liberty Village, where they conducted a K9 search of outbuildings and surrounding fields. It was reported Estade abandoned a crashed vehicle there — no word yet on where he obtained it. After a brief search, the area was cleared.
Shortly after noon, ISP and Princeton Police were called to the area of a North Main Street business for a possible sighting, which didn't pan out. The Princeton Police Department issued a release at about 12:30 p.m. indicating their part of the search had been called off, deferring to State Police to continue the search.
"As of 12:30 p.m. we are calling off the search for the subject who fled the Illinois State Police traffic stop yesterday," Princeton police said early Tuesday afternoon. "We have conducted extensive searches both on the ground and from the air with negative results. The subject has been identified, and further investigation to determine his whereabouts will be conducted by the State Police."
Despite those assurances, the search began again at 1:13 p.m. and continued until after 7 p.m. Tuesday. The Bureau County Sheriff's Department, in a news release, stated the following:
"At 1:13 p.m., according to Bureau County Sheriff James Reed, deputies responded to a possible burglary in progress. The suspect was believed to be the same individual who fled from Illinois State Police CRIMPAT team and Princeton Police Department in two separate incidents during the previous 24 hours."
Little was heard following reports of the attempted burglary, however social media activity in several Princeton-area Facebook groups reported continued police presence on the city's east side through the early evening hours.
At approximately 7:20 p.m., State Police confirmed via social media that Estade had been apprehended.
"Thanks to a cooperative effort between the Illinois State Police, the Princeton Police Department, the Bureau County Sheriff’s Department, and the Bureau County EMA, as well as the alert citizens of Princeton, the fugitive from yesterday afternoon’s fleeing incident is now in custody," the statement read.