Published: Fri, April 21, 2017
U.S. | By Eddie Scott

Jury reaches verdict for Eric Frein in state trooper ambush

Jury reaches verdict for Eric Frein in state trooper ambush

The man who led authorities on a 48-day Pennsylvania manhunt almost three years ago - after killing a state trooper in an ambush - was convicted on a dozen felony counts Wednesday, and is now faced with the prospect of a death sentence.

Frein, 33, of Canadensis, Pennsylvania, faces the death penalty for first-degree murder of a law-enforcement officer.

Pike County District Attorney Ray Tonkin is seeking the death penalty against Frein, 33, who allegedly opened fire from a wooded area across the street from the Blooming Grove barracks in northeastern Pennsylvania on September 12, 2014. Cpl.

Cpl. Bryon Dickson II was killed and Trooper Alex Douglass was critically wounded in the 2014 attack.

Frein was captured after a 48-day manhunt, in which he left bombs in the woods. He says the defense team "can't make him a holy man" but they're "trying to make him a man". He's convicted on 12 counts including first-degree murder. Frein's defense attorneys rested their case moments later, without calling any witnesses or offering any evidence.

"The jury took this case seriously", Pike County District Attorney Raymond Tonkin responded.

"Despite some dastardly acts that he may have committed, and he did commit according to the jury, beyond a reasonable doubt, Eric deserves to live", Ruzzo said amid a heavy rain outside the Pike County Courthouse after the jury had reached their verdict.

Before Dickson and Douglass were shot, Frein had been mulling an ambush for months, authorities said at the time.

The dragnet shut down schools and roads and forced several small towns to cancel trick or treating on Halloween.

Wolf applauded the verdict but didn't address Frein's sentence. He wrote a letter to his parents while on the run in which he talked about sparking a revolution.

The prosecution, headed by Pike County DA Ray Tonkin, is expected to review all of the evidence presented during the nine days of testimony. The state's last execution was in 1999, and it has executed only three people since the U.S. Supreme Court restored the death penalty in 1976.

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