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Tips lead to arrest hours before felon planned to flee U.S.

Sparked by his picture in the Sun-Star as Merced County's Most Wanted, numerous tips led to the capture of David Lawrence Pearson, 47, Wednesday afternoon outside an apartment complex in the 1800 block of Canal Farm Lane in Los Banos. Two others were arrested on charges of harboring a fugitive.

Sgt. Steve Sziraki of the Merced County Sheriff's Department said Pearson was found hiding in a bush outside the fencing ringing the perimeter of the apartment complex. A parolee at large wanted for being a sexual offender and for parole violation, Pearson had a bus ticket for Canada and planned to leave at 8:35 p.m. Wednesday for points north before his capture.

Sziraki said Westside sheriff's deputies and Los Banos Police Department officers assisted in searching for Pearson. The sergeant said dispatchers received numerous tips about Pearson's whereabouts after his picture appeared in the newspaper.

Sziraki said deputies conducted surveillance of the apartment complex for about 20 minutes and a number of people with past run-ins with the law were observed. When Randy Bunyrd, 40, of Los Banos, was contacted, he first denied knowing about Pearson but later admitted he was staying with him.

Bunyrd, on active parole, and his girlfriend, Misty Davis, 26, of Los Banos were arrested as accessories to a crime. She remained jailed Wednesday night in lieu of $50,000 bail, according to a correctional official.