CHESTER COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) – Escaped Pennsylvania inmate Danelo Cavalcante is now armed with a .22 caliber rifle and more than 500 officers are searching for the convicted murderer 13 days after he escaped from the Chester County Prison.
Lt. Colonel George Bivens with the Pennsylvania State Police says at 8 p.m. on Sept. 11 a driver reported seeing a man crouching along Fairview Road west of Route 100.
Troopers formed a perimeter and located footprints that matched Cavalcante’s prison shoes. Both of those shoes were located and a resident nearby reported that their work boots were stolen from their porch.
At 10:10 p.m. State Police say a resident reported seeing a short Hispanic male enter a garage on Coventryville Road and take a .22 caliber rifle equipped with a scope and flashlight. The resident fired several shots from a pistol at the man who State Police believe to be Cavalcante. State Police say they do not believe Cavalcante was struck.
State Police say a green sweatshirt and a white shirt believed to be Cavalcante’s were also found.
The North Coventry Police Department also says officers from around the area are searching the area around Route 100 and Route 23 for Cavalcante and that area roads are closed. Owen J. Roberts School District announced they would close schools on Tuesday due to the search.
Residents in the area are being asked to lock all doors and windows, secure vehicles, and remain indoors.
The search for Cavalcante continued Tuesday a day after State Police and the U.S. Marshals acknowledged the escapee evaded a perimeter and that law enforcement was playing the “long game.”
Cavalcante’s escape from the prison after he was convicted of murdering his ex-girlfriend was captured on video where he was seen crab walking up prison walls before State Police say he pushed through razor wire and climbed onto the roof. The 5 foot tall 34-year-old has only been spotted a handful of times and State Police say he over the weekend he stole and later abandoned a van.
The search for Cavalcante involves Pennsylvania State Police, U.S. Marshals, FBI, ATF, Border Patrol, and Chester County law enforcement. Additional assets include K9s, aviation units, and other tactical vehicles. State Police tell abc27 there are Troopers from across the state assisting, and WJET reports that members from Erie are among those joining the effort.
Pennsylvania Governor Josh Shapiro, who State Police say has been continuously briefed on the matter, arrived in Chester County on Tuesday afternoon.
“I’m confident we’re going to get this guy,” said Shapiro, who later added in a message for Cavalcante, “the gig is almost up, you’d be best to turn yourself in.”
Shapiro says an accounting of the total cost of the search will be determined once Cavalcante is caught.
There is a $25,000 reward for information leading to Cavalcante’s arrest and anyone who sees him should call 911 or the tip line at 717-562-2987.