Law Enforcement still looking for suspect who shot park rangerPosted: Updated:
MOUNT RAINIER, Wash.-- Pierce County Sheriff's Deputies and FBI agents this morning are letting campers leave Mount Rainier National Park.
The tourists have been kept there since yesterday, after someone shot and killed a park ranger.
Officers decided it was safer to let the 125 campers leave in the dark as they continue looking for the suspect.
Deputies believe 24 year old Benjamin Colton Barnes fatally shot ranger Margaret Anderson after she pulled Barnes over on the road to Paradise on Mount Rainier.
"Obviously we have a dangerous situation where somebody with a high powered weapon who's not afraid to use it, he already has done so and he killed somebody and he shot at our people," says Pierce County Sheriff's Detective Ed Troyer.
Sheriff deputies along with the FBI says Barnes is an Iraq War veteran with possible post traumatic stress. He has some survivalist skills and is believed to be armed and dangerous.
Barnes is also believed to have been involved in another shooting at a house party in Seattle early Sunday morning. He may have been on the run when he shot and killed the ranger.
Deputies say they have recovered his car, which had weapons and body armor inside.
They are now following some tracks in the snow but say the foot prints disappeared into some creek beds which is making tracking him difficult right now there is no word if the suspect is still inside the park or has made his way out.
This morning the park will be closed as the search continues.