Mountain man burglary suspect ID’d by police

Posted at 5:23 PM, Feb 21, 2012

Detectives in Kane and Iron counties refuse to give any details about their investigation, but court documents obtained by FOX 13 indicate a man named Troy James Knapp is the mountain man cabin burglary suspect.

Police in southern Utah may be a big step closer to finding the infamous Mountain Man Burglar. For about five years he’s stayed a step ahead of the law.

Court documents say 44-year-old Knapp is a convicted felon who is charged with four felonies relating to a pair of cabin burglaries in Kane County.

Knapp is considered armed and extremely dangerous, given that he allegedly threatened to harm the local sheriff. Officers from several agencies are working overtime to track him down.

Court documents say the armed suspect seen in several security pictures was positively identified as being Knapp.

Police say the mysterious mountain man has allegedly been ransacking remote cabins since 2007. The crime spree has ranged over 1000 square miles of rugged terrain.

Police say the suspect has survival skills to live off the land and has been very careful about covering his tracks. In at least one case, the mountain man disabled video security at a cabin by removing the system’s memory card, according to law enforcement.

But  in December, police got a couple of big breaks.

Police received fingerprint evidence from the state crime lab taken after a 2009 cabin break-in. The prints belonged to Knapp. Police then pulled up Knapp’s driver license photo and an old mug shot. They compared the pictures to the video and concluded it was him.

Detectives say Knapp appears to be armed with a high-powered Remington hunting rifle, allegedly stolen from one of the cabins. Police say Knapp allegedly left messages inside one of the cabins directed at law enforcement, with one saying: “Hey sheriff. (Expletive) you! Gonna put you in the ground.”

Identifying the mountain man suspect is only half the battle for police. They still need to pinpoint where he is currently staying and when they do, they believe he will be heavily armed.