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Troopers: Sniper manual found in suspect's room after ambush

Pike County District Attorney Ray Tonkin, front center, arrives for the first day of the trial of Eric Frein, an anti-government survivalist accused of killing a Pennsylvania police trooper and injuring a second in a 2014 ambush at their barracks, on Tuesday, April 4, 2017, at the Pike County Courthouse in Milford, Pa. Frein could face a death sentence if convicted in the sneak attack in northeastern Pennsylvania that killed Cpl. Bryon Dickson II, critically wounded Trooper Alex Douglass and led to a 48-day manhunt in the Pocono Mountains before U.S. marshals captured Frein. (Mike Mullen/The Times-Tribune via AP)
April 07, 2017 - 3:50 PM

MILFORD, Pa. - State police troopers told a jury Friday that they found a sniper manual inside the home of an anti-government sharpshooter charged in a 2014 barracks ambush that killed one trooper and wounded another.

Troopers recovered a U.S. Army manual called "Sniper Training and Employment" from Eric Frein's bedroom, as well as several long guns and hundreds of rounds of ammunition that prosecutors displayed for the jury. The ammunition had the same markings as the shell casings recovered from the scene of the ambush.

The testimony came Friday on the fourth day of Frein's trial as prosecutors continued their work tying Frein to the ambush that killed Cpl. Bryon Dickson II and critically wounded Trooper Alex Douglass during a late-night shift change at the Blooming Grove state police barracks.

Frein, 33, has pleaded not guilty. He could face a death sentence if he's convicted.

Frein's father, Eugene Michael Frein, testifying briefly for the prosecution, told jurors that Frein hadn't lived in the home for more than a month prior to the ambush, returning only on weekends.

Later Friday, prosecutors shifted their focus to the manhunt, calling FBI agents and police troopers who testified about the discovery of Frein's wooded campsite in Monroe County, a few miles from the Frein home in Canadensis. There, authorities found Frein's checkbook, ammunition and two small bombs.

Authorities zeroed in on Frein after a resident who was walking his dog in a wooded area 2 miles from the barracks spotted a 2001 Jeep partly submerged in a pond and called 911. Police found shell casings inside the vehicle that matched those found at the shooting scene. The Jeep was registered to Frein's parents and used by him.

The resident, James Novak, told jurors he wanted to help police who at that point had no suspect in the attack. So he began searching around his house and found the Jeep just a few hundred yards from his home.

Authorities have said Frein inadvertently ran into the pond while trying to make his escape the night of the ambush.

The Jeep's discovery touched off what would become a 48-day manhunt through the heavily wooded Pocono Mountains that culminated with Frein's capture by U.S. marshals at an abandoned airplane hangar more than 20 miles from the barracks.

Prosecutors say Frein confessed to the shootings, calling Dickson's slaying an "assassination" in an interview with police after his arrest. Authorities say he was trying to spark a revolution.

News from © The Associated Press, 2017
The Associated Press

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