Pennsylvania State Police announced they are taking over the manhunt of a convicted killer who escaped a Chester County prison on Thursday and has been spotted four times since.
Cavalcante is originally from Brazil, where he is also wanted for homicide, and is in the United States illegally.
Danelo Souza Cavalcante, 34, of Royersford, Pennsylvania, was most recently spotted by a state trooper within a two-mile radius of a wooded area in Chester County that is bordered off as police focus their search on the area.
Major Lieutenant Colonel George Bivens, deputy commissioner of operations with Pennsylvania State Police told reporters on Monday afternoon the trooper spotted Cavalcante from a distance and chased after him but was unable to capture the fugitive because of the terrain and other obstacles.
Bivens also said Cavalcante looked a little worn and tired during the “very brief sighting.”
The sighting was spoken about during a press conference in which Bivens announced that Chester County District Attorney Deb Ryan’s office has requested state police take the leading role in the investigation, which was agreed on.
Bivens said the state police will bring more technology and personnel to help with the situation.
Since Cavalcante escaped from prison, there have been several credible sightings within an area bordered by the intersection of Route 926 and 52 North on 52 to Parker’s Mill Road Southeast to 926, and west to the intersection of 926 and 52 in Pocopson Township.
On Saturday, the escaped murderer was observed on a residential surveillance camera at about 12:30 a.m. in the 1800 block of Lenape Road, about 1.5 miles from the prison.
Bivens, on Monday, asked residents within the area to check on their neighbors if they are not at home, and report it to the police so the property can be checked in their absence.
Bivens also said a helicopter is flying over the area while broadcasting a message.
“One of the things that we have done is we’ve had the individual’s mother make a recording asking him to surrender peacefully,” Bivens said, adding the message was recorded in Portuguese. “It’s being broadcast in an effort to facilitate his peaceful surrender.”
Bivens said his team recognizes this is stressful for the community, adding his assurance that they are working to bring this to a conclusion as quickly as possible.
When Cavalcante was spotted, he was wearing pants, a light-colored t-shirt, and white sneakers.
According to a notice from DA Ryan’s office, his appearance has remained unchanged, and he has long, black curly hair and is wearing a backpack.
Law enforcement is sweeping the area surrounding the sighting with officers from multiple state and federal agencies.
Ryan said, “Law enforcement is requesting that residents in the area remain indoors at this time. Lock your vehicles. Review your surveillance cameras and contact police if you observe anything suspicious. Danelo Cavalcante is considered an extremely dangerous man. Please remain vigilant in assisting with this search. If you see this individual, do not approach him. Call 911 immediately.”
Pennsylvania law enforcement officials and the U.S. Marshals Service are now offering a $10,000 reward in the search for Cavalcante, who was recently convicted of murdering his ex-girlfriend in 2021 and sentenced to life in prison.
Cavalcante — whom the U.S. Marshals Service also says is also “wanted for a homicide in Brazil,” his home country — escaped from the Chester County Prison on Thursday morning, but investigators said they believed he was heading south.
Immigration officials aren’t sure when Cavalcante entered the U.S. but told Fox News Digital that he was not “inspected or admitted by a U.S. immigration official.”
“After his arrest in the United States, ICE became aware of his unlawful presence, and an ICE detainer was lodged against Souza Cavalcante,” an agency spokesperson said. “ICE’s Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO), from the ERO Philadelphia Field Office, are supporting local, state and federal partners with the search for Souza Cavalcante.”
Fox News’ Greg Norman and Timothy Nerozzi contributed to this report.