Escaped prisoner Danelo Calavante’s plan was to drive to Canada in a stolen car before being captured by ‘hero’ dog Yoda, US Marshals reveal – as sister of woman he murdered thanks cops to have caught it
- Cavalcante was arrested Wednesday after a two-week manhunt
- More than 500 officers were actively searching for Cavalcante, who managed to escape the initial search perimeter around the prison.
- READ MORE: How Cavalcante went from ‘nice neighbor to jealous boyfriend’
Escaped prisoner Danelo Calavante planned to drive to Canada in a stolen car before being captured by a hero K-9 named Yoda after two weeks on the run, a US Marshall revealed.
Cavalcante, 34, survived two weeks on the run by eating watermelon he stole from a farm, drinking water from a stream and burying his feces so police wouldn’t find it, according to Supervisory Deputy U.S. Marshal Robert Clark, who led the manhunt.
The Brazil native, who was in the country illegally, escaped from the Chester County Jail, 30 miles west of Philadelphia, by crab-scaling a wall just days after being sentenced to life in prison for the murder of Deborah Brandão, 33 years old. in 2021.
His victim’s sister, Donna Leidi, thanked police for their work Wednesday, saying the family was “deeply grateful for the support and hard work of law enforcement over the past few days.”
She added: “Right now, my family and I need to regroup and focus on everything that has happened while also taking care of ourselves.
Escaped prisoner Danelo Cavalcante was captured Wednesday morning
“The last two weeks have been extremely painful and terrifying as they have reminded me of all the feelings of losing my sister and the idea that the abuser was hurting us again.”
Clark said Cavalcante agreed to speak through an interpreter after his capture and was “brutally honest” about his time on the run.
Cavalcante said he didn’t stray far from the Chester County Jail during his first three days on the run.
About 25 police officers managed to surprise him as they surrounded him Wednesday morning, but Cavalcante, who was wearing a Philadelphia Eagles sweatshirt, tried to escape again by crawling through the undergrowth with the rifle that he stole from a house he broke into on Monday.
Authorities then released a police dog to capture the killer. The dog bit him on the scalp and he was treated at the scene, police said. After a bloodied Cavalcante was captured, the search team’s SWAT officers paraded him around like a trophy and lined up for a photo with him around 8 a.m. ET.
After his capture, he was taken to a nearby state police barracks in an armored vehicle surrounded by a convoy of a dozen vehicles whose headlights flashed and sirens blared as he drove down the highway. . Two police helicopters followed.
Cavalcante was arraigned at the Avondale Barracks on a charge of escape, according to Judge Matthew Seavey’s office. A preliminary hearing was scheduled for September 27. He was to be taken to a state prison to continue serving the life sentence he received last month for the murder of his ex-girlfriend.