MANSFIELD, Ohio — They got him!
After a three-month search that covered six states, fugitive Shawn Christy was finally captured Friday afternoon in Mifflin Township, Ohio, near the interstate where he reportedly crashed a truck Sunday, authorities report.
Christy, 26, of McAdoo, was wanted for allegedly threatening President Donald Trump, a local district attorney and pledging to use “full lethal force on any law enforcement officer that tries to detain me.”
U.S. Marshals said Christy was found hiding between some large rocks on a streambed shortly after 4:30 p.m. in a densely wooded area. He was in possession of a knife and a .38-caliber handgun, according to a press release.
However, U.S. Marshal Martin Pane said he was taken into custody without incident.
He was taken to a local hospital for an examination, but seemed to be able to walk out of the woods under his own power in photos taken after his arrest.
Marshals said he is due before a U.S. magistrate in Ohio on Monday pending extradition to Pennsylvania.
“We are most pleased that this case is resolved with Mr. Christy safely in custody and headed back to Pennsylvania to face justice,” said Pete Elliott, U.S. Marshal for the Northern District of Ohio. “While he may have exhibited a strong determination to avoid capture, I hope he now understands that U.S. Marshals fugitive task forces are resolute and will not stop until they get their man.”
Christy allegedly crashed a truck stolen from Skitco Iron Works in Hazle Township on Interstate 71 near Mansfield, Ohio, on Sunday afternoon and the area had been heavily scoured in the days since.
At one point, law enforcement told the Mansfield News Journal that they had almost 80 people looking for Christy.
Up until this point, he managed to always stay a step ahead of authorities.
Christy has been touted as a survivalist. His father said in interviews that his son had been interested in survivalism from a young age, building his first “debris hut” at age 10.
The quest to bring Christy to justice took a circuitous path, starting in mid-June.
The journey led Marshals and other law enforcement from his home in McAdoo to New York, then back to Pennsylvania.
In late July, he allegedly broke into a relative’s home in Drums and stole handguns, setting off an extensive search in southern Luzerne County that lasted until Marshals announced they believed Christy stole a school van later found in West Virginia.
He then was reportedly spotted in Kentucky, where police say he broke into the home of Sarah Palin’s former son-in-law, Dakota Meyer.
Christy first made headlines in 2010 when Palin secured a restraining order against him. He then went to prison after harassing Palin’s lawyers and later violating his probation.
After this summer’s Kentucky sightings, Christy allegedly stole a pickup in Maryland that turned up Aug. 21 in Rush Township, Schuylkill County, only about 6 miles from his hometown.
Christy was believed to be somewhere in the Hazleton area until he stole the truck from the Hazle Township business last weekend.
The reward for information leading to his arrest had grown to $20,000.
“I would like to thank the community for their diligence in working with us to apprehend this fugitive,” said Marshal Pane in a release. “It is truly a testament of dedication and excellence demonstrated by the law enforcement community in leaving no stone unturned in the search efforts.”
Pane said additional charges against Christy related to his time on the lam are likely, as he’s been accused in several burglaries in addition to multiple vehicle thefts this summer.
Reach Dan Stokes at 570-991-6389 or on Twitter @ByDanStokes