CASCADE, Idaho -- Authorities in Idaho on Saturday divulged few details about how an FBI tactical agent had just shot and killed the suspected kidnapper and subject of a five-state Amber Alert.
James Lee DiMaggio, 40, was shot and killed at about 5:20 p.m. local time as ground units moved in on his camp, which was spotted from the air, authorities said.
Roughly one hour later, officials at news conference in Cascade, Idaho said Hannah Anderson, the 16-year-old who DiMaggio allegedly abducted from an east San Diego County home, was recovered safely and recuperating from her ordeal in a hospital.
“Hannah is safe, and that was the best outcome we were hoping for, our top priority,” said Ada County sheriff’s spokeswoman Andrea Dearden.
Hannah did not appear to have any physical injuries, Dearden added.
“She does appear to be doing OK at this point,” Dearden said.
FBI Special Agent In Charge Mary Rook declined to divulge details of how the confrontation between agents and DiMaggio went down, citing protocols for first processing the crime scene and completing an initial investigation into the shooting.
She did say that the multi-agency task force faced a “very challenging situation” and that it would take “some time” to process the crime scene.
About an hour earlier, at a news conference in San Diego, County Sheriff Bill Gore said his team was notified minutes after DiMaggio had been killed.
“Obviously, we would have liked Mr. DiMaggio to surrender and face justice in a court of law, but that’s not going to be the case,” Gore said.
DiMaggio allegedly killed Hannah’s mother, Christina Anderson, and 8-year-old brother, Ethan, whose bodies were discovered Sunday in the suspect's burning home in eastern San Diego County.
Back in Cascade, Idaho, where at least 30 locals and vacationers had gathered to witness the news conference.
Reporters peppered officials on how the encounter between agents and DiMaggio transpired, but they remained tight-lipped, citing the ongoing investigation.
Patti Bolen, sheriff of Valley County, where the incident occurred, gave a brief statement.
“Hannah is safe and that was our first priority from the very beginning,” she said.
After a short round of questions, she and collage of local and federal officials left the microphone stand and started walking to their awaiting cars, at which point the crowd of onlookers broke into applause, with some shouting “thank you!”
Officials on Saturday said they planned to get Hannah’s father, Brett Anderson, to Idaho to be with his daughter in the morning.
Mather reported from Cascade, Idaho; Wells from Los Angeles.Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times