Fugitive Eric Frein, who was wanted after he shot and killed Cpl. Bryon Dickson and injured Trooper Alex Douglas, was caught by police in an airplane hangar in Pocono Township after a 48-day search.
Frein’s charges – which were announced during a filmed press conference with Governor Tom Corbett, Pike County District Attorney Raymond Tonkin and Pennsylvania State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan and confirmed by Pennsylvania State Police – included homicide of a law enforcement officer, attempted murder of the first degree, possession of weapons of mass destruction, discharging firearms to an occupied structure and reckless endangerment.
The search, which police said cost several million dollars and involved up to 1,000 police officers, had the help of Temple’s K9 Unit, said Charlie Leone, executive director of campus safety services.
Officer Doug Hotchkiss and Baron, a Belgian Shepherd Retriever, and Officer Larry Besa and Jarvis, a Labrador Retriever, were sent to relieve other officers for about a week and returned the afternoon before Frein, 31, was captured.
“This is one of those extreme instances where his killer is on the loose – the dogs get tired,” Leone said.
Both the officers and dogs were trained at the Philadelphia Police Academy K9 unit and are trained in bomb detection, tracking and patrol, Leone said. Jarvis is trained in just bomb detection and tracking.
Philadelphia and SEPTA’s K9 Units were also called up, Leone said.
Leone also said that this kind of situation is not unusual and that the unit has been called down for other emergencies. The last time the dogs were needed was when the Delaware County Courthouse in Media faced a bomb threat in May 2012.
Patricia Madej can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on twitter @PatriciaMadej