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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Rhode Island

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Contact: 401-528-5300


PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Today the U.S. Marshals Service celebrates its 225th anniversary. As the nation’s oldest, most versatile federal law enforcement agency, it continues to build on its legacy of steadfast service and its unique position in the country’s federal justice system.

The U.S. Marshals Service’s legendary origins began in 1789 when the nation’s first president appointed the first U.S. Marshals.

“When President George Washington appointed the first 13 U.S. Marshals Sept. 24, 1789, his pen marked the creation of an agency that has since played a role in virtually every facet of the nation’s federal judiciary during times of crisis and times of peace,” said U.S. Marshals Service Director Stacia Hylton.

“From upholding the law in our untamed western territories to enforcing orders related to civil rights, the U.S. Marshals Service has been committed to answering the call of our great nation. As we mark 225 years of service, our men and women stand ready to continue that commitment,” Hylton said.
Today, the U.S. Marshals Service is a force of 5,400 deputies and civil servants who carry out operational and administrative duties as varied as apprehending fugitives, housing and transporting prisoners, protecting witnesses and federal judges, and managing and selling seized assets.

Most notably, the Marshals Service is the federal government’s primary agency for conducting fugitive investigations. Working with its law enforcement partners at the federal, state, and local levels, the Marshals apprehend more federal fugitives than all other federal law enforcement agencies combined. The U.S. Marshals arrested more than 110,000 fugitives during fiscal year 2013.

“As United States Marshal for the District of Rhode Island, I am proud and privileged to be part of the rich history of the U.S. Marshals Service and to lead a force of committed women and men who serve as Deputy Marshals, administrative personnel and Court Security Officers,” said United States Marshal for the District of Rhode Island Jamie A. Hainsworth. He added, “I am excited to be part of this celebration of the 225th  anniversary of the U.S. Marshals Service.”

Additionally, in Rhode Island, among the priorities of the U.S. Marshals Service is the physical protection of the Judiciary and federal court buildings; execution of federal warrants and to assist state and  local law enforcement in the apprehension of wanted persons, the protection of witnesses and the administration of the witness protection program; the management of all assets seized by the federal government in the District of Rhode Island; working with members of the Violent Fugitive Task Force, partnering with the RI State Police and Providence Police; and the Sex Offender Registration and Enforcement Task Force, partnering with state and local law enforcement agencies throughout Rhode Island.

United States Marshal Hainsworth added, “As we mark this significant milestone of 225 years, we must also pause to recognize the first Federal law enforcement officer killed in the line of duty, U.S. Marshal Robert Forsyth in 1794, and more than 200 U.S. Marshals, Deputy U.S. Marshals and Special Deputy U.S. Marshals that have died in the line of duty since. In Rhode Island, we remember the loss and pay tribute to Special Deputy Court Security Officer Frank McKnight, who was killed in May of this year while on duty.” 

Updated June 22, 2015