Home Seattle Press Releases 2012 Manhunt Over for Subject Suspected of Killing Park Ranger
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Manhunt Over for Subject Suspected of Killing Park Ranger

FBI Seattle January 03, 2012
  • Public Affairs Specialist Ayn Dietrich-Williams (206) 622-0460

On Monday, January 2, 2012, the FBI Seattle Division joined the National Park Service (NPS) in announcing the end to the multi-agency manhunt for the subject suspected of killing Ranger Margaret Anderson on January 1, 2012 in Mount Rainier National Park. The Pierce County Sheriff’s Department (PCSD) also joined NPS in its announcement that an aircraft spotted a body lying face down in the vicinity of Narada Falls. NPS indicated that searchers on the ground traversed challenging terrain to reach the subject and confirmed his identity as Benjamin Colton Barnes, the 24-year-old subject suspected in the homicide. FBI, NPS, and PCSD officials confirmed that Barnes was found dead.

FBI Seattle’s Assistant Special Agent in Charge Steven M. Dean followed the NPS announcement by acknowledging the efforts of many law enforcement agencies involved in the intensive manhunt. Although the FBI has the lead in investigating crimes that occur in national parks, Mt. Rainier’s location within Pierce County meant the early and sustained response from PCSD was critical. In addition to the significant role of NPS and PCSD in the manhunt, the FBI relied on valuable collaboration with the FBI Portland Division, the Washington State Patrol, the State Department of Fish and Wildlife, the U.S. Forest Service, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the U.S. Army, the Tacoma Police Department, the Port of Seattle Police Department, the Bellevue Police Department, the Drug Enforcement Agency-Seattle Division, the Central Pierce Fire & Rescue, the King County Sheriff’s Office, and the Seattle Police Department.

Laura M. Laughlin, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Seattle office, extended her condolences to the family of Ranger Anderson. “The FBI and the law enforcement community want Ranger Anderson’s family to know we honor her for making the ultimate sacrifice in her effort to enable the public to enjoy the beauty of Mt. Rainier and the environment she was sworn to protect.”