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Search Continues At State Park For Haverstraw Murder Suspect

Eugene Palmer (credit: CBS 2)

Eugene Palmer (credit: CBS 2)

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HAVERSTRAW, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – The search resumes Thursday for a Rockland County man accused in the murder of his daughter-in-law.

Police believe Eugene Palmer is armed, dangerous and hiding out in the sprawling wilderness of Harriman State Park, but are looking into whether someone may have picked him up and helped him escape.

Authorities have been looking for the 74-year-old since Monday when police said he gunned down his estranged daughter-in-law, 39-year-old Tammy Pannirello Palmer.

She was in the process of divorcing Palmer’s son and family members said her relationship with her father-in-law had grown increasingly ugly.

“He says ‘here’s money, pay my taxes, I’ve had enough. I just shot and killed Tammy,'” said Palmer’s sister, Elaine Palmer Babcock. “Give me about an hour to get away then call the cops and do whatever you have to do.”

Tammy Palmer’s parents are now seeking full custody of her two teenage children.

A military helicopter equipped with thermal imaging cameras is the latest to join the manhunt for Palmer, which is now spanning the East Coast. Police also found Palmer’s truck at the edge of the park and a recent campsite nearby.

“The ashes weren’t hot, so it wasn’t like we spooked him,” said Haverstraw Police Chief Charles Miller. “So he might have spent the night, the night before there.”

An avid hunter and retired park ranger, Palmer is apparently using his knowledge of the woods to avoid capture. He’s presumed to have more than one gun with him, police said.

Police have advised all campers to stay out of Harriman State Park for the time being and several previously scheduled events at the park have been canceled.

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