The “terrified” loved ones of the woman killed by an escaped Pennsylvania convict are under 24-hour police protection while remaining “barricaded inside” their home, officials said Thursday.
It’s been exactly one week since Danelo Cavalcante, 34, escaped from Chester County Prison in Pocopson Township and police are still scouring heavily wooded terrain outside of Philadelphia looking for him.
The escaped convict was convicted on Aug. 16 of first-degree murder for the fatal stabbing of a former girlfriend. Cavalcante was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.
His victim’s family now lives in fear as the killer roams free.
“They do have protection and they are terrified. They haven’t left their home,” Chester County District Attorney Deb Ryan told reporters.
“They’re barricaded inside and very concerned about their safety. We do have police details around them 24 hours a day but I know they’re very, very worried.”
Law enforcement on Wednesday released prison surveillance video showing how the 5-foot-2 Cavalcante stretched himself between a pair of parallel walls to push himself up to the roof where he escaped.
“This is an outrage. This should have never happened,” Ryan said. “We’re all upset and we’re all concerned.”
Given Cavalcante’s dexterity shown during his escape, police are paying special interest to trees and waterways where he could be hiding.
“It’s been a very thorough search,” State Police Lt. Col. George Bivens said.
Searchers are concentrating on an area, between eight and 10 square miles, bordered by Pennsylvania Route 926 on the north, Hillendale Road on the south, Pennsylvania Route 52 on the west and Creek Road on the east, police said
A reward for information leading to his arrest has been raised to $20,000, officials said.