ROYSE CITY — Multiple law enforcement agencies are in Royse City today, seeking the remains of a wanted fugitive.
The U.S. Marshals Service is coordinating “Operation Backtrack,” a search for the remains of Brian Keith Freeman, a fugitive wanted for capital murder and unlawful flight to avoid prosecution. Freeman is accused of murdering his ex-fiance Lori Hannah, in Ward, Arkansas, on March 22, 2017.
The fugitive investigation indicated that Freeman’s last telephone call originated in Texas, near his abandoned truck that was recovered March 30, 2017, by Hunt County authorities in Royse City.
Deputy U.S. Marshal Brandon Filla said the scene found in 2017 in Royse City indicated Freeman likely committed suicide.
“This murder occurred March 22, 2017, in Arkansas and days later his vehicle was found abandoned on the outside perimeter of Royse City,” Filla told the Herald-Banner. “In that vehicle were some belongings like identification and two cellphones; everything there that indicated he had possibly committed suicide — maybe in a wooded area.”
The U.S. Marshals Service is working with area law enforcement agencies to conduct the search for human remains, or any evidence indicating he was in the area, like clothes and possibly even a weapon.
“We have cadaver dogs out there to find human remains,” Filla said. “So yes, this is two years later, but this is something that we want to check the area to make certain that if there is a body out there, or was, that we know it and can find it.”
Authorities will be searching a rural area in Royse City Jan. 14 -16 in pursuit of Freeman to bring closure to the victim’s family.
“It’s the Marshal Service with the assistance of numerous agencies from around this area that are attempting to bring closure for this case and for the family members of the victim,” Filla said. “We have individuals with boots on the ground doing a grid search with GPS locating so we can make sure that we’ve searched that specific grid in the area.”