Police gave an update Tuesday morning on the massive manhunt for the convicted killer who escaped from an eastern Pennsylvania prison nearly two weeks ago.
Danelo Cavalcante, who police say is armed with a stolen weapon, has still not been caught as the search enters its 13th day.
Cavalcante broke out of the Chester County Prison on August 31 by “crab walking” between two walls, scaling a fence and traversing across razor wire. Since then, Pennsylvania State Police have said multiple credible sightings of the escaped inmate around the area.
Here's what we learned:
- A multi-agency search: There are now about 500 law enforcement members assisting in the manhunt, Pennsylvania State Police said. Personnel are from several different agencies, according to Lt. Col. George Bivens of the Pennsylvania State Police. He said "nothing has gone wrong" during the search so far, adding, "I believe we will be successful in the long run."
- The latest sighting: Cavalcante was most recently spotted Monday in Chester County’s South Coventry Township, about 20 miles north of the county prison he escaped from, according to an emergency alert sent by Chester County officials Monday night to area residents via email and text message.
- The fugitive is armed: Cavalcante "is considered armed and extremely dangerous," Bivens said. He said Cavalcante has a .22 caliber rifle that he stole from a resident's garage overnight. That homeowner fired several shots at Cavalcante, but the fugitive is not believed to be injured. Police said they believe Cavalcante is “desperate enough” to use the stolen rifle. People living in the search perimeter have been asked to secure their homes.
- Located footprints: Police found footprints in mud that were “identical” to the footprints of the shoes that Cavalcante wore in prison, Pennsylvania officials said. After they found the footprints, Cavalante’s prison shoes were found abandoned, according to Bivens. Another resident told police a pair of boots were stolen from her porch.
- What is making the search so challenging: One challenge is the terrain of the search area, Bivens said previously. It is a large, densely wooded area with many places to hide. It has also been difficult to secure a search perimeter because it had a “massive” underground tunnel system, large drainage ditches and thick vegetation, he said.