Wanted Mendota man apprehended in Earlville

EARLVILLE – A Mendota man at the center of an intensive search by law enforcement officials was taken into custody on Oct. 5 in Earlville. 

Lowell Maxwell Ambler, aka Max, 46, was wanted for violation of bail bond resulting from two previous charges of home invasion and aggravated battery. Several area police and sheriff’s departments were looking for the Mendota man who, they said was possibly armed and dangerous.

On Sept. 15, the Lee County Sheriff’s Department arrested Ambler for the offenses of home invasion and aggravated kidnapping, both being Class X felonies. The arrest was the result of an ongoing investigation from an incident reported on Aug. 26 in rural Compton. Ambler is alleged to have entered a dwelling and, while wearing a hood, robe, or mask, confined the victim against her will.

Ambler also allegedly bound the victim’s hands with duct tape, causing bruising. Ambler was arrested and booked into the Lee County Jail on a $250,000 bond. He posted $25,000 and was released on Sept. 20.

Ambler allegedly stole a vehicle from the rural Mendota area on Oct. 2. The vehicle was located in Plainfield, near the residence of the victim. Ambler then allegedly car-jacked a vehicle in Plainfield the morning of Oct. 4. He is believed to have removed the driver of the car at gunpoint and stole his vehicle.

At approximately 3 p.m. on Oct. 4, the Lee County Sheriff’s Department was notified by the Plainfield Police Department and the LaSalle County Sheriff’s Department that the vehicle Ambler car-jacked had been located south of Earlville, near a wooded area. A person matching the description of Ambler was spotted by law enforcement, running from a hunting blind in the wooded area where the car was located. Law enforcement agencies from Plainfield PD, LaSalle County Sheriff’s Department, Mendota PD, ISP District 17, Lee County Sheriff’s Department, among others, actively searched for Ambler in the Earlville area.

At approximately 6:15 a.m. Oct. 5, a concerned citizen called the LaSalle County Sheriff’s Department, believing that they had spotted Ambler attempting to break into a home across the street from their residence in Earlville. Officers/Deputies from area law enforcement already deployed to the Earlville area responded and created a perimeter around the home.

Negotiations soon began and it was learned that Ambler was, in fact, in the home identified, which was owned by a friend of Ambler. The friend was subsequently released by Ambler, through the negotiation process. Ambler also surrendered, without incident, to law enforcement a short time later.

Ambler was transported by Lee County Deputies to the Lee County Jail, pursuant to the violation of bail bond warrant issued on Oct. 1. He is currently being held in lieu of $1 million bond and is scheduled to appear in court at 11 a.m., on Nov. 13.

Other charges related to crimes committed in LaSalle and Will counties may be forthcoming. Ambler is a former La Salle County sheriff’s deputy and had served briefly as an alderman in Earlville.

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