Authorities locate weapon they believe was used in murder of Pennsylvania State Police Officer Bryon Dickson
Credit: Butch Comegys/Scranton Times & Tribune/AP; Inset: ennDOT/Pennsylvania State Police/AP

Police say Eric Frein had long planned the confrontation that led to the alleged murder Sept. 12 of a Pennsylvania state police officer.

After finding a rifle and two AK-47 clips in the forest near the police barracks where Cpl. Bryon Dickson was shot, State Police Lt. Col. George Bivens said at a news conference Sunday that the manhunt for the suspect is continuing.

“We are pushing him hard, he is no longer safe and I am confident that he will be apprehended,” said Bivens. “Both dogs and human trackers are getting indications that we are on the right trail.”

At the same time, he said, investigation has shown that Frein, 31, from Canadensis, Pennsylvania – a self-taught survivalist whose home possessions included a copy of a book entitled Sniper Training and Employment, according to court documents – had considered an ambush on law enforcement “for months, and maybe years.”

They also worry he may be on the hunt for others. Frein “has made statements about wanting to kill law enforcement officers and also to commit mass acts of murder,” State Police Commissioner Frank Noonan said last week. “He has very strong feelings about law enforcement and seems to be very angry with a lot of things that go on in our society.”

Dickson, 38, a father of two, was ambushed during a shift change outside of the state police barracks in Blooming Grove, Pennsylvania. Another trooper, Alex Douglas, 31, was wounded.

Frein has since been placed on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted List. The suspect, according to the federal agency, “is known to be a heavy smoker, a weapons enthusiast, and a survivalist. He claims to have fought with Serbians in Africa, and he has studied Russian and Serbian languages. He may have shaved his head on both sides and have long hair on top.”

The agency is offering a reward up to $100,000 for information leading to Frein’s arrest.

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