America's Most Wanted
February 7, 1988: AMW debuts on the seven FOX-owned-and-operated
stations (New York, Boston, Washington, Chicago, Houston,
Dallas and Los Angeles). TV Crime-fighting really works!:
February 11, 1988: Four days later, AMW marks its first
capture as the FBI announces the arrest of one of its 10
Most Wanted Fugitives, David James Roberts, in New York
City, as a direct result of viewer tips to the program.
Another Top Ten Fugitive Nabbed: May 29, 1988: FBI Director
William Sessions appears on AMW to announce three new additions
to the FBI Top Ten List, one of whom is caught within 24
hours of his announcement.
Mass Murderer Captured: May 7, 1989: AMW makes international
news with the capture of New Jersey mass murderer, John
Emil List, at-large for nearly 20 years.
Presidential Honors: April 25, 1990: AMW Host John Walsh
is honored by President Bush at a White House ceremony for
his work on behalf of crime victims and missing children.
Once Lost, Now Found: May 10, 1990: AMW helps recover it's
first missing child, Nicole Ravesi, and aids in the arrest
of her abductor, Kenneth Cole, her former babysitter. Outstanding
Civilian Honors: October 5, 1991: FBI honors John Walsh
with its highest civilian award "The Louise E. Peters
Memorial Service Award", presented by the FBI and the
Society of Former Agents of the FBI. An Old Case Finally
Solved: April 14, 1993: William White Graham, an accused
cop killer and revolutionary terrorist, surrenders under
the pressure of new leads generated by his profile on AMW
after 20 years on the run. It becomes the oldest case ever
solved by the program.
400th Capture Special: February 3, 1996: AMW celebrates
its 400th capture. Yehia Badawi, who police say robbed a
Pennsylvania supermarket and then opened fire at cops once
they spotted him, was taken down as a direct result of his
profile on America's Most Wanted. There's No Place Like
Home: May 25, 1996: AMW broadcasts one of its greatest and
proudest accomplishments; a reunion of the 20 children whom
the show has helped recover. The "End": September
21, 1996: Two months after FOX announces its cancellation,
AMW airs what it believes to be its final show. For the
first time since the show has been on the air, John Walsh
profiles the tragic murder of his six-year-old son, Adam.
You Asked For It " You Got It ": November 9, 1996:
Following the cancellation of AMW, an outpouring of support
from governors, law enforcement officials and viewers changes
FOX's plans and the nation's number-one crime-fighting show
returned to the airways and kicked off its "debut"
by capturing Alan Eugene White just 30 minutes after the
show aired. Serial Killer On The Loose: May 10, 1997: AMW
is the first to bring the search for alleged serial killer
Andrew Cunanan nationwide. He was profiled six times on
AMW before his body was found on a house-boat in Miami Beach,
Fla., reportedly a suicide. John Walsh and his crew were
on the scene when the discovery was made. Walsh was the
only member of the media who was allowed to enter the crime
scene. International Manhunt a Success: July 7, 1997: Accused
pedophile, Kenneth D'Cunha, is captured after viewer tips
lead police to New Zealand. D'Cunha was sought by police
for his involvement in a sex ring with underage boys. Ironically,
D'Cunha, an Orthodontist, was turned in by another orthodontist
who remembered D'Cunha's name from an AMW episode.
Ten Years and Stronger Than Ever: September 6, 1997: AMW's
season premiere kicks off it's ten years on FOX. After a
decade on the network, AMW is rapidly approaching it's 500th
direct result capture and has reunited nearly two dozen
missing children with their loved ones. AMW's Fastest Capture:
September 20, 1997: Jack and Mona Volgares were wanted for
the murder of Mona's eight-year-old daughter, Saleana Gamble.
The couple were arrested and their other three children
recovered just 29 minutes after their segment aired. AMW
Captures 500th Fugitive: January 28, 1998: The Black Widow,
Amy DeChant becomes AMW's 500th capture. DeChant was wanted
for murdering her boyfriend, a wealthy Las Vegas gambler.
When authorities finally caught up with DeChant they couldn't
believe where she chose to "hide-out." Amy DeChant
was arrested in a nudist colony in Florida.