UPDATE: Wendell Blount nabbed after 6 months on lam

OXFORD – Former Calhoun County businessman Wendell Blount is back in custody after six months on the run from prison time.

U.S. Marshals said Friday they arrested Blount, 58, in Baton Rouge, La., about 6 p.m. Thursday as he allegedly tried to get away from their Middle Louisiana Fugitive Task Force.

A federal jury in Greenville convicted Blount on April 23 of the vehicular manslaughter of Dutch journalist Esther Hageman as she rode a bicycle toward Jackson to visit with friends.

The charge had added severity because prosecutors claimed he was driving impaired by morphine. The April 22, 2009, accident occurred on the Natchez Trace when Blount’s SUV struck Hageman from behind.

As he awaited sentence, Blount took off from monitored house arrest.

U.S. Marshal Jeff Woodfin said his forces have been chasing Blount ever since.

He’ll be returned to the Northern District of Mississippi to be sentenced.

Blount faces up to 33 years in prison. He settled a civil lawsuit with Hageman’s family.

For more, read Saturday’s Daily Journal or NEMS360.com.

Patsy R. Brumfield/Daily Journal