The Polk County Sheriff’s Office and the U.S. Marshals Service in the Western District of Arkansas announce the arrest of Chad and Stephanie Voelkel in Manitoba, Canada on Wednesday afternoon. Chad Voelkel was wanted in Polk County for failure to appear on the charge of Rape, a class “Y” felony. Stephanie Voelkel was arrested on the charge of Permitting Abuse of a Minor, a Class “B” Felony. Four minor children, all considered endangered, were recovered and are now safe in the custody of Canadian Officials.
On May 23rd, 2019, a warrant was issued for Chad Voelkel on the charge of failure to appear. Voelkel had been out on bond pending his court date after he was originally charged with Rape on or about January 3rd, 2019 in the Circuit Court of Polk County. When Voelkel failed to appear for his court appearance, Polk County Sheriff’s Deputies immediately began a search. The search and investigation for Voelkel by Sheriff’s Deputies determined that Voelkel had fled the area. The investigation also revealed that Stephanie Voelkel and their four minor children had also disappeared. On May 29th, Stephanie Voelkel was charged in the Circuit Court of Polk County with Permitting the Abuse of a Minor. Due to the nature of the charges against the Voelkel’s, all four children were considered endangered by law enforcement.
Soon after the disappearance of Chad and Stephanie Voelkel and their four minor children, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office and the U.S. Marshals Service began working together to locate the missing children and arrest Chad and Stephanie Voelkel. Early in the investigation, it appeared that the husband and wife fugitives had fled the area and had taken their four minor children to Canada. Polk County Deputies and Deputy US Marshals continued to investigate the whereabouts of the Voelkel’s and their four children. In recent days it was determined through investigation that the Voelkel’s were in the Portage la Prairie area of Manitoba, Canada. The information from the investigation was relayed to Canadian officials including the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) and the Canadian Border Services Agency (CBSA). On Wednesday afternoon, the fugitive couple were arrested and the four children were safely recovered.
The US Marshals Service and the Polk County Sheriff’s Office would like to thank the following entities for their assistance in this case. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police, Canadian Border Services Agency, US Attorney Dak Kees, and the US Department of Justice, International Branch.