Suspect in Hannah Graham case in custody

Posted at 8:20 PM, Sep 24, 2014
The wanted poster for Jesse Leroy Matthew, Jr, the person of interest in the missing UVA student case. Credit: Charlotessville Police Department via CNN.

The wanted poster for Jesse Leroy Matthew, Jr, the person of interest in the missing UVA student case.
Credit: Charlotessville Police Department via CNN.

By Dana Ford


(CNN) — The only known suspect in the disappearance of University of Virginia student Hannah Graham was in custody Wednesday night.

Jesse Matthew, who had been sought on suspicion of abduction with the intent to defile, was arrested in Galveston County, Texas. He was found on the beach in Gilchrist on the Bolivar Peninsula, according to that county’s sheriff’s office.

“We have a person in custody, but there’s a long road ahead of us, and that long road includes finding Hannah Graham,” Charlottesville Police Chief Timothy Longo told reporters.

He declined to go into the circumstances of Matthew being taken into custody. An extradition process is under way for the 32-year-old Matthew, who is also wanted on suspicion of two counts of reckless driving, Longo said.

According to CNN affiliate KPRC, deputies got a call about a suspicious person camping on the beach. One responded, and ran the license plate of that person’s vehicle. It came back as wanted, the affiliate reported.

Matthew did not resist arrest, KPRC said.

Earlier, Matthew’s lawyer was mum about most everything.

“I am Mr. Matthew’s attorney,” said James Camblos, who spoke outside his office in Charlottesville, Virginia.

“I was hired on Saturday. That’s the only thing that I’m going to confirm at this point. The family and I — nobody is making any statements at this point in time. We might later on, but right now we are not,” he said.

His comments came one day after authorities obtained an arrest warrant for his client, who police believe was the last person with Graham.

She was last seen September 13 in an area of Charlottesville known as the Downtown Mall. Investigators have been looking for her since, and in an increasingly large area.

“We’re asking for a broader community search with property owners,” Longo told CNN’s “Anderson Cooper 360,” in an interview to air Wednesday night.

Specifically, he said he wants property owners of large parcels in surrounding counties to search their land and report back.

Authorities have previously searched Matthew’s apartment and car. Although they have declined to discuss the specifics of what might have been found, potential evidence was sent to a lab for analysis.

According to Longo, Matthew willingly went to a police station over the weekend, when there was no warrant for his arrest.

He asked for a lawyer. They spoke and then left, Longo said.

Camblos confirmed that he was the attorney who met with Matthew at the police station.

“I’m not telling you anything else at this point,” he said.

Authorities are now offering a $100,000 reward for information leading to the safe return of Graham, 18, a second-year student at the University of Virginia.

They have received 1,500 tips so far in the case, and are urging anyone with information to call the police tip line at 434-295-3851.

“We’re asking every person within the sound of my voice to help us find Hannah Graham,” Longo, the police chief, said.

CNN’s Jean Casarez contributed to this report.

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