Pennsylvania State police say they have identified the man who shot and killed a state trooper and critically wounded another outside of a rural police barracks over the weekend.
The shooting occurred around 11:00 pm Friday. Law enforcement units from surrounding areas descended on the township of nearly 5,000 people to help locate the shooter.
State police say they acted on a tip from a local resident who was walking his dog in a wooded area 2 miles from the barracks and spotted a vehicle slightly submerged in a pond and called 911.
Inside the vehicle police found shell casings that matched those found at the shooting scene, according to State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan.
The vehicle belonged to Eric Matthew Frein, 31, of Canadensis, Pa., who, according to police, is still at large and armed with the .308-caliber rifle that he used to open fire on the barracks late Friday. They also found Frein's social security card, a Pennsylvania Game Commission range permit, camouflage face paint, a black hooded sweatshirt, two empty rifle cases and military gear, Noonan said.
According to FOX News, several law enforcement agencies, including the FBI, were helping with the investigation. Authorities pored over old cases investigated by the two troopers -- and by others in the barracks and elsewhere -- in hopes of turning up a suspect.
Police searched Frein's home in Canadensis early Tuesday, and his parents told investigators that an AK-47 assault rifle and a .308-caliber rifle with a scope were missing from the residence, according to a criminal complaint filed with the Pike County district attorney's office.
Frein lived with his mother until recently and according state police he was a "survivalist who has expressed a desire to kill law enforcement officers and commit mass murder."
“He has expressed anti-government leanings in the past, especially toward law enforcement," Noonan said, adding that many of his rants appeared on social media.
The killing of an innocent man is deplorable. It is a tragedy and exemplifies true cowardice to hide out and shoot at unsuspecting people who have caused no harm to you. If Frein is found guilty of this crime he deserves to be punished to the fullest extent of the law.
That being said, the use of the association fallacy applied by whomever labeled Eric Matthew Frein a 'survivalist' is particularly irresponsible. The person who shot the two troopers was a deeply disturbed individual. His desire to actively prepare for an emergency by becoming self-sufficient is not related in the least to a desire to kill innocent people. Not to mention, what kind of a 'survivalist' is 31 -years-old and lives with his parents as a means of obtaining 'self'- sufficiency?
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Expressing a desire to commit mass murder and kill police is one thing, storing food and water is another.
Those of us who devote time and energy to holding government and law enforcement accountable, do so because we abhor injustice and strive for peace. Killing innocent people is not peaceful.
We've seen attempts in the past, as in the case of Antonio Buehler, of an actual police department trying to smear peaceful activists by grouping them in to some "Domestic Extremist Group."
This type of guilt by association is an obvious attempt to push government accountability into some type of fringe societal element, thereby making peaceful people look like monsters.
This tactic is old, mostly ineffective and an insult to the person(s) killed by capitalizing on their death for political gain. However, it does tend to work on the less informed individuals in society. That is why it is up to us to maintain professionalism and remain outspoken about the PEACEFUL manner in which we wish to incite change.
Violence is most assuredly not the answer. Violently attacking the government creates victims out of the ones we are trying to expose as criminals.
Those who initiate and support such violence will be complicit in creating the hellish police state that will inevitably ensue as a consequence of these actions.
That is why we must win the hearts and minds of the people within the state. We must expose as much of their violence and corruption as we can, for that is what garnishes support; not murder.
We must show that those of us who stand against this state corruption are the good guys. We are not some violent group of terrorists who are quick to don the pitchforks and torches and beg for blood.
Removal of due process, the initiation of violence, and abuse of power are tools of the state; not of the peaceful revolution.
Those who would take an innocent life to incite change are no different than the mass murdering sociopaths within the government.
This is how the police state ends, not through murder.