The search for an alleged cop killer continues in the high desert along the border between Arizona and Utah, as the suspect, 23 year old Scott Curley, proves more elusive to authorities than anticipated.
A ten thousand dollar reward has been offered for the capture of Curley, with over three hundred law enforcement officers participating in the search. The manhunt began after Curley shot and killed Deputy Brian Harris with a rifle while the officer was pursuing the suspect on a separate charge. Curley is accused of burglarizing a nearby high school in Fredonia the night before.
Curley, a native American, is believed to be on foot, but has been successful in giving authorities the slip, leading searchers through unusually rugged terrain. During the cover of night, the suspect was apparently able to slip away from a police dragnet, covering greater distance than expected. It is believed Curley may have stashed some supplies in anticipation of his escape, suggesting the killing may have been planned well in advance.
Experts also suspect Curley may be getting assistance from friends or family. “We know someone is out there who knows where this individual is and we hope they will step forward,” U.S. Marshal David Gonzales was quoted in the Salt Lake Tribune.
According to individuals familiar with Curley, rumors had been swirling for days that the suspect might be planning an attack. Others suggest the troubled young man may be delusional, and friends feared he could be reaching “the breaking point“.
Searchers, rotating in shifts, are currently focusing their efforts on an area between Fredonia and Kanab, Utah, just north of Arizona. Authorities deny they have given officers orders to shoot Curley on sight, but admit tensions are high. Still, they claim they maintain hope of capturing the troubled killer alive.