The Vermont Supreme Court started the new year by ruling against convicted Essex County sex offender Frank Fellows.


Fellows, 48, who gained infamy after fleeing his trial and being featured as a fugitive on the “America’s Most Wanted” television show, is now serving a sentence of five years to life for sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl in 2009.

Vermont Supreme Court

In recent years, Fellows has repeatedly sought to have his conviction overturned through multiple appeals and requests for what is known as “post-conviction relief.” All of which have been denied by the courts.

Most recently, Fellows filed a petition for habeas corpus in Orleans Superior Court alleging dozens of claims of illegal conduct related to his conviction and sentencing. The petition was denied by the district court.

Fellows appealed that ruling to the Vermont Supreme Court which has now upheld the lower court’s decision.

In 2010, Fellows fled Vermont on the first day of his trial on charges of felony sexual assault on a minor under 16 and lewd and lascivious conduct with a child. But the trial, prosecuted by Essex County State’s Attorney Vince Illuzzi, continued without Fellows who was convicted two days later on both charges.

After being featured as a fugitive on America’s Most Wanted, Fellows was found and arrested in Montana after police there got a tip about a suspicious man camping along a river. Montana authorities said Fellows had been working as a tree trimmer in the town of Twin Bridges, Mont., for several months.

According to the Vermont Department of Corrections, Fellows is serving his sentence at Northern State Correctional Facility in Newport.


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