Home News Manhunt Continues for ‘Survivalist’ Murder Suspect Who Escaped Jail

Manhunt Continues for ‘Survivalist’ Murder Suspect Who Escaped Jail

Manhunt Continues for ‘Survivalist’ Murder Suspect Who Escaped Jail

A manhunt continued on Sunday for a murder suspect who escaped from a Pennsylvania jail late on Thursday using bedsheets he tied together to climb down from the roof, officials said.

Pennsylvania State Police said that Michael Burham, who escaped from the Warren County Jail, could be hiding in the steep, rugged wilderness near the city of Warren, which is about 20 miles south of Jamestown, N.Y.

Warren borders the Allegheny National Forest, which covers more than half a million acres of rural Pennsylvania.

The police described Mr. Burham as a self-taught survivalist with military experience and said that they have found stockpiles of supplies as well as camp sites that he may have used.

“It supports what we’ve said all along, that he’s prepared, as a survivalist in the past, and tried to be ready, if you will, to spend time in the woods,” said Lt. Col. George Bivens, a deputy commissioner for the Pennsylvania State Police, during a news briefing Sunday afternoon.

Officials added that it is possible that Mr. Burham has secured a firearm.

Michael Burham was last seen wearing a denim jacket, orange-striped prison jumpsuit and Crocs, but he could have changed clothes since then, according to the police.Credit…Warren County Police

“Anyone in this situation becomes more desperate over time, and we plan to use that to our advantage,” Colonel Bivens said. “He’s not going to be able to get a lot of rest. We’re going to push hard until we find him.”

Mr. Burham, 34, was held on $1 million bail for kidnapping, burglary and related charges and is a suspect in a homicide investigation, Colonel Bivens said.

Cecile Stelter, a Warren County spokeswoman, said that Mr. Burham escaped the county jail by climbing on top of exercise equipment and then out a metal gated roof. He then climbed from the roof using bedsheets he had tied together.

Mr. Burham was arrested by the F.B.I. in May after a dayslong manhunt as well as what the bureau described as a “spree of alleged crimes,” including a sexual assault in Jamestown, N.Y., and the kidnapping of an older couple in Pennsylvania.

Mr. Burham was last seen wearing a denim jacket, an orange-striped prison jumpsuit and Crocs, but the police added that he possibly had changed clothes since then.

Colonel Bivens on Saturday said that, even with searches taking place by air, there were many areas where the police have had to conduct their searches on foot.

“We ask the residents to be vigilant and report anything suspicious to us,” he said on Sunday. “We’ve also asked them to secure their homes, their cars, their businesses and not allow him easy access to supplies or vehicles.”


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