Ex-Maryland political aide captured, wounded after manhunt

“The FBI takes all shooting incidents involving our agents or task force members seriously,” Buchwald said.

McGrath, 53, served as chief of staff to former Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan. He was declared a wanted fugitive after his disappearance, and the FBI has said he was considered an international flight risk.

After McGrath failed to appear at Baltimore’s federal courthouse on March 13, attorney Joseph Murtha said he believed McGrath, who had moved to Naples, Florida, was planning to fly to Maryland the night before. Instead of beginning jury selection, a judge issued an arrest warrant and dismissed prospective jurors.

“I haven’t a clue. I didn’t see this coming,” Murtha said days later. “This behavior is so out of the ordinary for him. Obviously his personal safety is a concern.”

McGrath was indicted in 2021 on accusations he fraudulently secured a $233,648 severance payment, equal to one year of salary as the head of Maryland Environmental Service, by falsely telling the agency’s board the governor had approved it. He is also accused of fraud and embezzlement connected to roughly $170,000 in expenses. McGrath has pleaded not guilty.

McGrath resigned just 11 weeks into the job as Hogan’s chief of staff in 2020 after the payments became public.

If convicted of the federal charges, he faces a maximum sentence of 20 years for each of four counts of wire fraud, plus a maximum of 10 years for each of two counts of embezzling funds from an organization receiving more than $10,000 in federal benefits.

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