Danelo Cavalcante, a 34-year-old Brazilian national, has been on the run for almost two weeks after escaping from the Chester County Prison in Pennsylvania. His escape sparked a seven-day manhunt, with law enforcement officers from various agencies working tirelessly to locate him. Cavalcante's escape came just two weeks after he was convicted of first-degree murder for the killing of his former girlfriend, Deborah Brandão.
Brandão, 33, was fatally stabbed by Cavalcante in April 2021 in front of her two young children. He was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for her murder. Cavalcante was also wanted in Brazil for another murder. The details of that case have not been provided, but there is an active warrant for his arrest in his home country.
The escape from Chester County Prison occurred on August 31. Cavalcante managed to scale a wall in the recreation yard, climb over razor wire, run across a roof, and jump to the ground. His escape went undetected for over an hour until guards conducted a headcount. The tower guard on duty at the time was subsequently fired.
Cavalcante's escape route was similar to that of another inmate, Igor Bolte, who escaped in May but was quickly apprehended. Bolte stated that he was able to scale a wall in the exercise area by crab-walking, the same technique Cavalcante used. However, Cavalcante had to contend with razor wire on the roof, which was installed after Bolte's escape.
After his escape, Cavalcante was spotted on doorbell cameras at the homes of two former acquaintances. However, he had altered his appearance, being clean-shaven and wearing a bright green hoodie. Authorities believe he may be seeking assistance from people he knows in the area.
During his time on the run, Cavalcante stole a refrigerated van from a dairy business near Longwood Gardens. The van was later found abandoned in a field in East Nantmeal Township, about 15 miles west of Phoenixville. It is believed that he abandoned the van because it was low on fuel.
Law enforcement officials are deeply concerned about Cavalcante's ability to evade capture and the possibility that he may try to steal another vehicle to facilitate his escape. They have issued a reward of $25,000 for information leading to his arrest.
Cavalcante's sister has also been arrested by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and is facing possible deportation. The exact reason for her arrest has not been disclosed, but authorities believe she may have information that could assist in the capture of her brother.
As the manhunt for Danelo Cavalcante continues, law enforcement agencies are urging anyone with information on his whereabouts to come forward. They also warn that anyone who offers assistance to Cavalcante will face prosecution. The focus remains on apprehending Cavalcante and ensuring that justice is served for the heinous crimes he has committed.
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8. “Where has Danelo Cavalcante been spotted since his Pennsylvania jailbreak?” The Independent, 11 Sep. 2023, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/crime/danelo-cavalcante-escape-manhunt-pennsylvania-b2409550.html
9. “Escaped Pennsylvania inmate Danelo Cavalcante sneaked past police again” Insider, 11 Sep. 2023, https://www.insider.com/escaped-chester-county-inmate-snuck-past-authorities-underground-tunnels-drains-2023-9
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