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Eric Frein guilty of murder in ambush of state troopers

20 April 2017, 01:43 | Melissa Porter

Eric Frein guilty of murder in ambush of state troopers

Eric Frein guilty of murder in ambush of state troopers

Prosecutors will ask the same jury that convicted Frein to send him to death row, while defense lawyers will argue for a sentence of life without parole.

The prosecution has rested its case against an anti-government survivalist charged with ambushing two troopers at a Pennsylvania state police barracks.

Frein, who listened impassively, is a survivalist, a person skilled in outdoor living who aims to survive a catastrophe or dramatic event such as nuclear war or revolution.

The search for Frein, who was accused of killing a Pennsylvania state trooper and injuring another, came to an end on October 30, 2014, after he was captured by U.S. Marshals at an abandoned airport near Tannersville, Pennsylvania.

Frein shot Dickson in the chest and through the shoulders and spine from a distance of 87 yards, waited almost 90 seconds until Trooper Alex Douglass came to Dickson's aid and then shot him, too, Tonkin said.

"A terrorist with murder in his heart, a plan in his mind and a rifle in his hand, who slithered through the woods", was how Frein was described by Pike County District Attorney Ray Tonkin in his closing argument.

At trial, prosecutors put into evidence a letter they say Frein wrote to his parents while on the run which says only "passing through the crucible of another revolution can get us back the liberties we once had".

Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf says "justice was served" Wednesday when a jury convicted Eric Frein (freen) of first-degree murder and other counts in the 2014 attack. He says the verdict means "a brutal murderer will be held accountable for his heinous and cowardly acts".

The jurors found him guilty of all 12 charges, including murder of a law enforcement officer, terrorism and two weapons of mass destruction counts related to bombs he left in the woods while eluding a 48-day police dragnet.

The trial for Frein's penalty will begin on April 20.

The defense then stood and said it would not have any evidence or witnesses to present and rested its case a minute later.

Prosecutors presented more than 500 pieces of evidence tying Frein to the attack. District Attorney Ray Tonkin says Frein was a terrorist and a cold-blooded killer who was "literally hunting humans" when he opened fire on the Blooming Grove barracks September 12, 2014.

Frein's defense attorneys, Michael Weinstein and William Russo, did not call any witnesses. Bryon Dickson and critically wounded a second trooper.

The $11 million manhunt, which put him on the FBI's most wanted list and left the community on edge for weeks, ended when he was captured by US marshals outside an abandoned airplane hangar in a former resort near Tannersville, Pennsylvania.

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