With tens of thousands of acres of undisturbed northeastern Pennsylvania forest offering ample opportunity to hide, the self-taught survivalist accused in last week’s deadly ambush at a state police barracks has so far avoided capture.
Not that authorities aren’t looking hard. As many as 200 officers at a time are trying to flush 31-year-old Eric Frein out of the dense, boggy woodlands where he’s believed to be keeping out of sight.
He could be anywhere: Concealing himself in a cave. Taking cover in thick brush. Crouching behind boulders “as big as tractor trailers,” as one outdoorsman put it.
Patrick Patten, an expert in woodland searches, says the forest can be an excellent place to hide and poses a special risk to law enforcement.