Woman helped accused child rapist hide out at elderly lady’s house — cops
The friend of accused child rapist David Hamilton — still on the run from authorities in New Jersey and Pennsylvania — was arrested for allegedly allowing him to stay in the home of a 78-year-old woman she cared for.
At a press conference on Wednesday afternoon, Solebury, Pennsylvania police said Hamilton stayed in an elderly woman's home on Bobwhite Road in New Hope from Friday night, when he was last seen in the woods by a hunter and fought with a police officer, until Tuesday.
Meredith Custodio was the woman's caregiver for the past two months, and allowed Hamilton to stay at the house, police said.
He fled the house on Tuesday night in the senior woman’s 2016 Toyota Avalon, with Pennsylvania license plates PD3759P.
Hamilton, 47, has eluded police for a week since he was first charged with a dozen counts of sexual assault against last Wednesday. Police said he served for 20 years in the U.S. Army including two tours of duty in Iraq. Hamilton is considered to be armed by police and "very dangerous." He also skilled at surviving in the woods.
Police said they visited the home twice last weekend and spoke to Meredith Custodio, who said she didn’t know him. The relationship between Custodio and Hamilton was not disclosed, but police said she is not related to the two sisters he is charged with sexually assaulting several times over the past five years.
The two children have been taken from the area by their mother and police have had extra patrols at their school.
Solebury police released a surveillance photo of Hamilton leaving a Target store near the Oxford Valley Mall that they said was taken on Friday. It added to the timeline of his whereabouts after being seen crossing the Calhoun Street Bridge into Trenton early that day and again in the woods of Solebury minutes from New Jersey.
Earlier, police said Hamilton was believed to be camping along the Delaware River Canal in the New Hope/Lambertville area in a white tent with a red top. Officers will patrol along the river in areas where people may be involved in activity this weekend.
The U.S. Marshals Violent Crime Fugitive Task Force is involved in the search for Hamilton and said locating him is their "top priority."
Solebury police posted a $10,000 reward for information leading directly to Hamilton's arrest. Anyone seeing Hamilton should contact 911 or call the US Marshals tipline at 866-865-TIPS (8477). A similar $1,000 reward was issued by the Hunterdon County Prosecutor's Office Crimestoppers.
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