PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Authorities have been combing the woods of northeast Pennsylvania for two weeks now looking for the man accused of ambushing troopers outside of a state police barracks in Blooming Grove.
The dragnet for 31-year-old Eric Frein sent officers to an abandoned hotel on Friday.
State police turned their attention to the old Buck Hill Inn in the Pocono Mountains.
“There was information generated that caused us to believe he might have an interest in that location,” said Lt. Col. George Bivens, of Pennsylvania State Police.
The 400-room hotel, built more than a century ago, has been closed since 1991. Frein was known to visit the hotel, even after it was closed.
“This property spans over 4,600 acres and more than 900,000-square feet of structure. Every inch of this private vacant resort had to be cleared,” said Lt. Col. Bivens.
But the search came up empty.
Frein is wanted for killing Cpl. Bryon Dickson and wounding of Trooper Alex Douglass.
Police on Friday said they believe Frein had been planning the attack for a couple of years because of what they found on a computer hard-drive that Frein had access to.
“The search of this computer hard drive indicates extensive Internet research on topics such as how to avoid police manhunts, use of various law enforcement technologies and skills related to survival,” said Lt. Col. Bivens.
Police also searched Frein’s personal computer, but say he removed the hard drive prior to the shootings.
Trackers say they have spotted Frein in the woods several times, but say he’s always too far away to be caught. However, he hasn’t been seen in the last few days.
Earlier this week, police found empty packs of the Serbian cigarettes he smokes and dirty diapers, which might allow him to stay in one place for long periods of time.
Authorities believe they have Frein contained in a five-square-mile perimeter around his parents’ home.
Police dogs have picked up his scent, and at one point, even scared him out of hiding.
“Caused him to jump out at quite some distance out ahead of us and escape,” Lt. Col. Bivens said.
Police also say Frein likes to re-enact historic war battles, and video has now surfaced of him at events.
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