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'We got to a get a grip on this issue' | Oscar Rosales was a wanted fugitive in Harris County for 25 years

Court records confirm Oscar Rosales was a wanted fugitive in Harris County for 25 years.

HOUSTON — The man accused of killing Harris County Precinct 5 Corporal Charles Galloway during a traffic stop was a fugitive on the run for 25 years.

Court records show back in 1995, Oscar Rosales was sentenced for aggravated assault but then he disappeared. A warrant was issued for his arrest, but for the past 25 years he’s been able to hide from law enforcement.

“We hear this phrase thin blue line, it’s not so thin," Harris County Pct. 5 Constable Ted Heap said.

Backed by an army of law enforcement agencies, Houston Police Thursday afternoon gave new details about Rosales and his arrest in Mexico.

RELATED: 'Sheer evilness': Oscar Rosales was on the run since 1996 before arrest for Cpl. Galloway's murder, DA said

“It is apparent that Oscar Rosales, a 25-year fugitive for the crime of aggravated assault has been violent before," Harris County District Attorney Kim Ogg said Thursday.

Court records show the charge from 1995 was aggravated assault with a knife. Rosales, who was living under another name at the time, was given probation for stabbing another man during a bar fight. 

RELATED: Timeline: What we know about 'savage' murder of Corporal Charles Galloway

Then, at some point, the district attorney says the man, originally from Central America, disappeared.

“It is reported that he is wanted for murder in El Salvador between his 1996 absconding from probation and the murder of Corporal Galloway," the district attorney said.

“The first thought that came to my mind was, is how many other Rosales’ are out there that are wanted?" Andy Kahan, director of Victims Services for Crime Stoppers, said.

He says we saw a similar story play out in 2019 with the murder of Harris County Deputy Sandeep Dhaliwal. The man accused of shooting him during a traffic stop was also a wanted fugitive for violating his parole.

“We got to a get a grip on this issue or you are going to continue to see people, especially in law enforcement, pay the ultimate price, by losing their life," said Kahan.

During the afternoon press conference, the FBI leadership talked about the rising number of law enforcement officers who have been killed, saying now is the time to re-double efforts to get violent offenders off the streets.

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