UPDATE: Kidnapper James Lee DiMaggio has been shot and killed by law enforcement officials on Saturday night while Hannah Anderson, the 16-year-old who was kidnapped, is safe.
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The search for James DiMaggio, 42, and his captive, Hannah Anderson, 16, is now focused on terrain so rough in the expansive and roadless Idaho wilderness that getting qualified personnel in to find and rescue Anderson is a formidable feat. Though the sense of urgency is great.
DiMaggio allegedly killed Hannah’s mother, Christina Anderson, and Hannah’s 8-year-old brother, Ethan Anderson, leaving the bodies in their burning house Sunday. DiMaggio was a close family friend. He is said by authorities to have had an infatuation with the 16-year-old.
Her father, Brett Anderson, said he “would have quashed that relationship in an instant,” if anyone had seen strange behavior, according to CBS News.
Marissa Chavez, 15, a friend of Hannah Anderson’s, told the Daily News, “She [Anderson] was a little creeped out by it. She didn’t want to be alone with him.”
The search is now centered on the Frank Church River of No Return Wilderness, a 2,366,757-acre roadless area sprawling central Idaho up to its northern border. It is second only to California’s Death Valley Wilderness as the largest unit of the National Wilderness Preservation System in the lower 48 states.
A horseback rider told authorities he saw DiMaggio and Anderson hiking with camping gear on Wednesday. A car believed to be DiMaggio’s was found on the outskirts of the wilderness area. The rider said Anderson did not seem to be with DiMaggio by force and she seemed in good health. Anderson’s family said there could be many reasons the teen did not ask for help—she may have been under threat of greater danger if she tried to ask for help.
DiMaggio may be armed, so authorities are only sending in trained officers for the rescue—unable to use volunteers to cover the large area.
Mike Medberry, 57, who has hiked the area before told CBS, “It’s called the ‘River of No Return’ for a reason … It’s harsh and rugged, with steep terrain, lots of downed logs and thick brush.”
Jared Hopkinson, owner of Rocky Mountain River Tours, told the broadcaster, “If you wanted to go days without being seen, that’s the place to do it.”
Jason Pack, an FBI spokesman said, however, “We’ll be here as long as it takes,” according to CBS. He said, “We are parents. If this was our child, we’d want the same resources out there.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.