(WHTM) — Danelo Cavalcante, the convicted murderer who escaped from Chester County Prison, has been arrested and charged with one count of felony escape after a two week manhunt.
Cavalcante was taken into custody alive around 8 a.m. Wednesday morning with no shots fired, according to Governor Josh Shapiro. According to court records published Wednesday afternoon, Cavalcante is charged with one count of felony escape in the third degree.
It’s possible Cavalcante could face more charges, however, he was already sentenced to life in prison for the murder of his ex-girlfriend. A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Sept. 27 and bail was denied. An attorney was not listed for Cavalcante on court records.
According to the Department of Corrections, as of 3 p.m., Cavalcante is being housed at SCI Phoenix, a maximum-security prison in Montgomery County.
State Police say officials responded to a residential alarm in the containment area around midnight but did not find Cavalcante. A helicopter then picked up a heat source, but had to be grounded due to weather.
Early Wednesday morning law enforcement moved in and a dog, K9 Yoda from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, was able to subdue Cavalcante, who State Police say attempted to evade police by crawling under brush with a rifle west of PA Route 100.
The arrest was made by a combination of State Police and Border Patrol.
Cavalcante suffered a bite wound from the dog but not other injuries were reported. Cavalcante was taken to the State Police Avondale station for processing after his arrest. Photos showed him being taken out of the Avondale station wearing a hospital gown after being arrested in a Philadelphia Eagles sweatshirt.
‘Today is a great day here in Chester County, said Chester County District Attorney Deb Ryan. “Our nightmare is over and the good guys won.”
State Police say people intended to assist Cavalcante, but they do not believe he received that help.
“This was an exhaustive search for an extremely violent and dangerous man that ended with the best possible outcome – the escapee’s capture without physical harm to residents or the brave officers who tracked him down,” Attorney General Michelle Henry said. “I commend the hundreds of searchers who were laser-focused in their mission, and did not flinch at the challenges they endured along the way.”
Henry says Cavalcante is expected to be arraigned on the felony escape charge, which was filed on Aug. 31. The Office of the Attorney General will handle the investigation and prosecution regarding Cavalcante’s escape from Chester County Prison.
Cavalcante’s escape from the prison on August 31 was caught on video that showed him crab walking up prison walls, after which State Police say he pushed through razor wire and climbed on to the roof.
Cavalcante was convicted of murdering his ex-girlfriend in 2021. He is also wanted in for a separate murder in Brazil. He escaped from Chester County Prison while awaiting transfer to state prison.
Police believed they had closed in on Cavalcante on Monday evening, after they say he stole a rifle from a garage. The homeowner encountered Cavalcante and fired at him, but police did not believe he was injured.
The search for Cavalcante consisted of law enforcement agencies including Pennsylvania State Police, Border Patrol, FBI, U.S. Marshals, ATF, Chester County District Attorney’s office, and agencies from Chester, Montgomery, Delaware, and Bucks Counties.
The full press conference from Wednesday morning can be watched below: