The search continues for an escaped inmate suspected of being “survivable” in the murder, and police said Saturday that they are growing more desperate because he is in Pennsylvania.
Michael Charles Parham, 34, is possibly “somewhere south of Warren,” Pennsylvania State Police said.
On Friday, authorities believed video from a doorbell camera from earlier in the week showed the escapee. On Saturday, officials said that was not the case.
“With relative certainty, Barham is not the person depicted in that video,” Pennsylvania State Police Lt. Col. George Bivens said at a news conference Saturday.
Someone came forward to identify the subject in the doorbell camera video, he said.
However, authorities believe he is in the area of doorbell camera video based on other evidence, Bivens said Saturday afternoon. Tips from the public have led to several searches in the Warren area, an inconclusive but promising one, he said.
“He was in the area where that video happened,” Bivens said.
Saturday focused on urging the public to look out for missing items such as lighters, matches, tar, blankets and food taken from campsites, storage sheds and garages, Bivens said.
“No doubt he will be more desperate,” he said.
Bivens reminded the public that Parham is trained to make the most of challenging situations.
“Barham is a self-taught survivalist with Army Reserve experience,” he said. “As previously reported, we believe he has adapted to survive in the wild. Our searches have revealed small reserves or camps in wooded areas.”
Bivens encouraged residents of northwestern Pennsylvania and western New York to “regularly review their doorbell and surveillance camera footage for anything they think may be helpful in the search.”
“I reiterate that Parham should be considered armed and dangerous, and we ask the public not to approach,” Bivens said.
Parham escaped from the Warren County Jail on the night of July 6 using bound bed sheets, prompting a massive multi-agency manhunt and warnings from authorities that he was “extremely dangerous” and should not be approached.
Parham is missing from the prison’s recreation area the next morning. He “hefted himself” onto the exercise equipment and exited the yard through a metal door roof, Warren County spokeswoman Cecile Stelter said at a news conference last week. He then climbed onto the floor using bed sheets tied together.
Employees realized Barham was missing minutes after he escaped, Stelter said, noting that he was on video surveillance while he was in the recreation area.
“He is considered dangerous because of his past actions,” he said. “The public is asked not to approach him, but call 911 if they see anything unusual.”
A reward of up to $22,000 is being offered for any information leading to Parham’s arrest.
According to Stelter, Barham was jailed for burglary and arson. He is also accused of kidnapping a Warren County couple and is a suspect in the May 11 murder of Kala Hodgkin in Jamestown, New York.
Warren City Police and the Warren County District Attorney’s Office are investigating the escape.