Manhunt for former chief of staff to ex-Maryland governor, failed to appear in court

Reporter: Claire Galt Writer: Paul Dolan
Published: Updated:

A manhunt is underway in Naples after a former chief of staff to an ex-Maryland governor failed to appear in court on Monday.

Authorities say Roy McGrath is on trial for wire fraud and embezzlement charges.

And now the FBI and U.S. Marshals are on the lookout even heading to his Naples home and want answers.

Roy C. McGrath. CREDIT: WINK News

Authorities believe he’s at his Naples home because he’s been living there. Wednesday afternoon WINK News reached out to one of McGrath’s neighbors. He said he had no idea that McGrath was even his neighbor, but after hearing he is, he won’t forget it. Robert Desiano, McGrath’s neighbor, told WINK News that Wednesday was like a fever dream.

“It’s not every day you have a fugitive who was wanted by the FBI and a high-level person living near you,” Desiano said.

Desiano recorded a video and told WINK News that federal agents and the Collier County Sheriff’s Office swarmed McGrath’s home, weapons in hand, Wednesday morning.

“There was a SWAT team with the bulletproof shield. And it was automatic weapons. And there was a whole trail of people ready to go into the house. the wife came out. And then shortly thereafter the whole team went in with the guns and the shields and everything else,” Desiano said.

McGrath was set to start trial on Monday in Maryland for wire fraud and embezzlement charges but never showed up to court.

When Collier County deputies did a wellness check, he wasn’t there. So, they’re assisting FBI agents and U.S. Marshals in the manhunt.

“I’m right there, like, ship yards away. And so there was a little uneasy uneasiness as I’m filming,” Desiano said.

It was all something Desiano had to see if he was going to believe.

“You think in Naples, you’re not going to ever see it. But like I said earlier, I’m not surprised. You don’t know that. In today’s day and age, what’s going to happen? You don’t even know who your neighbors are, you don’t know what they’re capable of doing,” Desiano said.

Marshals said at this point they don’t think McGrath has tried to harm himself, rather he’s still out there.

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