A suspected sex offender profiled on The Hunt was killed by police Monday. CNN reports that former photographer Charles Mozdir had recently been profiled on their show with John Walsh, and he was killed as authorities closed in on him and he engaged in a shootout.
Police had been looking for Mozdir, 32, since June 2012. After the CNN episode featuring him aired, police received a tip that he was in Manhattan working at a restaurant. That tip did not work out at the time, but Sunday night the episode aired again and a new tip came through. This time police got an address for the suspect and they quickly closed in on him.
In addition to Mozdir being killed by police, The Hunt suspect injured a couple of officers, reports CNN. Two U.S. marshals and one police officer were hurt as Mozdir engaged with them, but reports indicate that their injuries were not life threatening.
Mozdir was accused of molesting the son of two close friends in California. The now 7-year-old had been sick, and Charles had been helping to care for him. The boy told his parents that Mozdir had touched him inappropriately. Authorities investigated, and they found evidence at Mozdir’s home on his computers and on his phone of child pornography and bestiality. It was then revealed that another young boy had previously made accusations toward the photographer as well.
According to the CNN page for The Hunt, Modzir was even the photographer at the wedding of these friends. They had known him for quite some time, and Charles was present for the birth of their son. Though they knew him to be eccentric, but they never imagined he would harm their son. Apparently Mozdir was even the child’s godfather, and when the boy told his mother what had happened the couple wasted no time in alerting the police.
Charles was arrested in the 2012 investigation, but then he failed to appear at his June 2012 arraignment. Arrest warrants were issued, but Mozdir was nowhere to be found. Authorities searched multiple places in the time since then for Mozdir, at times believing he may be in Mexico, Japan, Georgia, or California. Until recently, he managed to evade their grasp.
PIX 11 reports that The Hunt suspect was killed by police after he opened fire on the agents trying to arrest him. The incident happened around 1 pm Monday near a smoke shop located on West Fourth Street in Manhattan. The news that he is no longer a threat will surely come as a relief to the families of the boys Mozdir allegedly molested. It will be interesting to see if any new cases arise as authorities pour through his current belongings.
John Walsh, of course, has a long history of bringing attention to missing suspects and criminals. He led America’s Most Wanted for years, and now is collaborating with CNN on this new show. Clearly he knows how to get results, as the incident this week where police killed The Hunt suspect shows.
[Photo via CNN]