Federal officials caught a man convicted of aggravated murder living in St. Paul Thursday night, 37 years after he escaped from an Ohio prison by sawing through bars and cutting a prison fence.

U.S. marshals along with St. Paul police arrested Oscar Juarez, 66, at his apartment at 382 Pierce St. in St. Paul. Juarez was living under the identity of Eleasor Morales Moreno, a woman who died in 1992, in a St. Paul apartment located near schools and Hamline University.

Authorities estimate that Juarez had been living in St. Paul for about 15 years before the U.S. Marshals North Star Fugitive Task Force arrested him Thursday, said U.S. Marshal Pete Elliott.

In 1975, Juarez received a life sentence for the shooting death of a Toledo man. Three years later, he escaped from the Marion Correctional Institution in Ohio by sawing through prison bars and fleeing over the north fence of the prison. When guards went to look for Juarez, they found a dummy in his bed covered with blankets.

Juarez stayed in hiding for years, creating new identities for himself before police found him, authorities say.

U.S. marshals started a cold-case program back in February and began looking into new leads on Ohio’s most wanted escapee. U.S. marshals have solved five cold cases since kick-starting the U.S. marshal’s Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force cold-case unit.

Beatrice Dupuy