Police Rescue Teen, Kill Suspect In Idaho Wilderness
Authorities wait near a blackhawk helicopter at the Cascade Airport in Cascade, Idaho, on Saturday as they comb Idaho’s Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness. Robby Milo/Associated Press
An intense, week-long search for teenager Hannah Anderson and her alleged abductor ended in the Idaho wilderness when police shot and killed the suspect and rescued the girl.
Suspected kidnapper James DiMaggio, 40, was killed by an FBI agent after his campsite was discovered on Saturday in an aerial search of the rugged Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness, about 40 miles from the town of Cascade, Idaho.
DiMaggio was killed about 4 p.m. MT on Saturday when ground units moved in after he was located, “leading to the confrontation,” San Diego County Sheriff Bill Gore added.
“Obviously, we would have liked Mr. DiMaggio to surrender and face justice in a court of law, but that’s not going to be the case,” he said at a news conference.
Law enforcement officials were providing few details of the shooting of DiMaggio or the rescue of 16-year-old Anderson, but Gore said that the teen was in “pretty good shape” despite her ordeal.
He said Anderson was taken to a nearby hospital where she would be “thoroughly evaluated.”
“No one really knows where an investigation like this will lead,” said Mary Rook, special agent in charge of the FBI’s Salt Lake City division. “In this case, our team faced a very challenging situation.”
The Associated Press reports that the location of the campsite, near Moorhead Lake, wasn’t far from the last known sighting of DiMaggio and Anderson when a horseback rider alerted authorities that he had seen the pair on Wednesday. The AP says the rider, whose name wasn’t released, didn’t realize that the two people he saw were the subject of a manhunt until he got home and saw the news.
Update At 4:00 p.m. ET:
The Los Angeles Times quotes law enforcement sources as saying DiMaggio looked as though he was “fortifying a patch of wilderness” when an FBI agent moved in and shot him on Saturday:
“… sources said that before the confrontation, authorities had observed DiMaggio moving some wood and other materials around, possibly to fortify his position or make the hideout harder to see from the air.
DiMaggio and Anderson were found with some camp gear, including a blue tent, said the sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to comment.”