Frankie John Smith, 61

WISE, Va.—A man on the run from Wise County authorities for nearly four years has been captured in Florida.

Frankie John Smith, 61, who is accused of firing a shotgun at a man in 2013, was apprehended in Miami Thursday by the Wise County Sheriff’s Office and U.S. Marshals Service in conjunction with the Marshals Service Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force.

Smith, who was panhandling when found, is believed to have used a family member’s identification to avoid arrest over the past several years, Wise County Sheriff Ronnie Oakes said. The arrest occurred without incident and Smith admitted his identity when confronted, he added. 

Smith is being charged as a fugitive from justice in the state of Florida and will await extradition back to Virginia to face a charge of attempted murder.

The original incident occurred in August 2013 at a residence on Dotson Creek Road, outside of Wise, according to Lt. Charles Sanders. 

“Mr. Smith fired a shotgun at the victim, who was seated inside a car,” Sanders said. “The victim sped away and Mr. Smith has been on the run in hiding since.”

Smith, who was listed as one of the county’s most wanted individuals, has a number of previous convictions in Wise County Circuit Court, including felony escape, assault and battery and breaking and entering. The convictions occurred between 1996 and 2001, according to court records.

The county listed Smith as “armed and dangerous” is its most wanted poster.

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