Registered Non-compliant Sex Offender Arrested In Fremont
Friday, December 1, 2023

FREMONT - A non-compliant registered sex offender out of Steuben County was arrested in Fremont, resulting in the schools going on lockdown.

The Steuben County Sheriff's Department stated at around 9:30 am detectives arrived in the 700 block of West North Street in Fremont acting on a tip from the public on the possible whereabouts of 43-year-old fugitive registered sex offender Aaron Matthew Harp who had several outstanding felony warrants for his arrest out of Steuben County.

Upon arriving in the area, detectives located a vehicle matching the description of a vehicle known to be associated with Harp.

As the vehicle was being surveilled, a female approached it and detectives made contact with her near the vehicle.

At that point, another responding deputy observed a male subject fleeing on foot southbound from the area through the neighborhood.

The female subject was detained and identified as 26-year-old Deserea Renea McConnell of Fremont.

McConnell confirmed that the male subject who fled was Aaron Harp and allegedly admitted that she alerted Harp to the police presence which prompted Harp to flee on foot.

A subsequent search of the area was conducted with the use of a Fremont Police K-9.

During that time, Fremont Police placed Fremont Community Schools on a lock down as a precaution due to the close proximity of the search area. After an initial search lasting nearly 2 hours, Harp could not be located in the area.

The search was then suspended and the school lock down later lifted after it was determined that Harp was not near the school.

Sheriff's detectives remained in the area conducting surveillance to see if Harp might return.

Just before noon, detective's spotted Harp again back in the 700 Block of West North Street.

Several units responded to the area and after another short search, Harp was located inside a residence on North Street thanks to a cooperative citizen.

Harp was taken into custody without further incident and transported to the Steuben County Jail.

Harp was booked into the jail for failing to appear on 3 separate charges of felony failure to register as a sex or violent offender. Harp is also the subject of a new Sheriff's failure to register investigation and additional charges are expected.

McConnel was booked on a charge of level 6 felony assisting a criminal.
Harp remains held without bond pending a court appearance.

McConnell remains held in lieu of a $3,000.00 bond. Assisting the Sheriff's Office at the scene were the Fremont Police and the Indiana State