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UPDATE: Police Confirm Body Belongs to Iraq War Vet Suspected in Shooting of Mount Rainier National Park Ranger

Police named Benjamin Barnes a person of interest in the shooting and killing of Ranger Margaret Anderson on the road to Paradise. The park is closed until further notice, although evacuation of the lodge took place Monday morning.

KIRO TV is reporting today that authorities believe they have located the body of Benjamin Barnes, the man whom is a strong person of interest in the killing of Ranger Margaret Anderson.

The Washington State Patrol put out the following message on Twitter:

"A body of a white male has been located face down in the snow with no heat signature. ID has not been confirmed yet."

"The body found is believed to be that of homicide suspect Benjamin C. Barnes. Again that has not been confirmed."

Here's the report from Enumclaw Patch:

The 24-year-old man suspected of fatally shooting a Mount Rainier National Park ranger was found dead in the park Monday, wearing just jeans and a T-shirt, according to law enforcement officials.

The body of Benjamin Colton Barnes was spotted by plane partially submerged in Paradise Creek above Narada Falls, the Tacoma News Tribune reported. Pierce County Sheriff spokesman Ed Troyer said officials believe Barnes died of exposure, the paper reported. The Pierce County medical examiner was on the scene inspecting the body. Two firearms were located near the body.

“He appears to have not been the victim of any type of violence other than the weather,” Troyer told KING 5 News. "He put himself into a position where he wasn't going to get out of," said Troyer. "They had containment on both ends of the valley. If he was still moving he wasn't going to get out."

Barnes is suspected of shooting park ranger Margaret Anderson, 34, on Sunday after he failed to stop at a tire checkpoint.

In an interview with The Seattle Times, Anderson’s father, the Rev. Paul Kritsch, said that his daughter and her husband, Eric, were happy to be finally working as U.S. park rangers in the same park.

"They had been looking for that for a long time, to be in the same park," Kritsch, of Scotch Plains, N.J., told the Times in a phone interview.

The FBI is now in charge of the investigation.

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A ranger of four years at Mount Rainier National Park is dead after she was shot and killed Sunday by a suspect whom authorities say is still on the loose.

Police believe suspect Benjamin Barnes shot and killed Ranger Margaret Anderson on Sunday morning, after he failed to stop at a required tire checkpoint.

"A ranger tried to pull the car over and when it failed to stop, park ranger Margaret Anderson established a road block with her vehicle," according to the National Park Service. "The assailant jumped from his car and opened fire with a shotgun, fatally wounding Ranger Anderson."

Authorities believe Barnes then fled on foot into the woods. Authorities arrived at the scene, including the Pierce County SWAT team.

"They, too, were fired upon while rendering aid to Ranger Anderson," according to the NPS.

Authorities shut down the park and are not allowing anyone to enter or leave. That includes 125 park visitors and 17 park staff in the visitor center, which has a restaurant to provide food, restrooms, and water, and law enforcement officers are on hand to provide protection.

UPDATE: Pierce County Sheriff spokesman Tweeted that authorities are evacuating the Paradise lodge, this morning, five at a time. The park, however, will remain closed.

The search for the murderer continues into the night, with fixed wing aircraft using forward looking infrared to scan the ground.There are a more than 100 officers from a variety of agencies assisting with the manhunt for the shooter, including National Park Service, Pierce County Sheriff, FBI, Washington State Patrol, US Forest Service, City of Enumclaw, and Lewis County Sheriff.

Mount Rainier National Park will remain closed tomorrow.

Anderson, who was 34, served at Mount Rainier for four years. She is survived by her husband, also a park ranger at Mount Rainier, and two young children.

As for the 24-year-old suspect who police say is armed and dangerous, KOMO 4 News is reporting that Barnes is an Iraq war veteran whom police say is also a suspect in the early Sunday morning shooting of four people at a house party in Skway.

At the park, authorities recovered his vehicle, which had weapons and body armor inside.

Patch will update this story as it develops.

Here is the full press release from the National Park Service:

This morning an armed assailant shot and killed Ranger Margaret Anderson on the road to Paradise at Mount Rainier National Park.The assailant is still at large and a manhunt is underway. The incident began when a car failed to stop at a required tire chain checkpoint.A ranger tried to pull the car over and when it failed to stop, park ranger Margaret Anderson established a road block with her vehicle.The assailant jumped from his car and opened fire with a shotgun, fatally wounding Ranger Anderson.The assailant then fled on foot into the woods. Park Rangers and law enforcement officers from various agencies responded .The Pierce County SWAT team arrived on scene and they, too, were fired upon while rendering aid to Ranger Anderson.

Law enforcement officers closed the park road, evacuated park visitors from Longmire, and locked down Paradise, with all visitors in the area taking refuge in the Jackson Visitor Center.There are 125 park visitors and 17 park staff in the visitor center at this time.The visitor center has a restaurant to provide food, restrooms, and water, and law enforcement officers are on hand to provide protection.

The search for the murderer continues into the night, with fixed wing aircraft using forward looking infrared to scan the ground.There are a more than 100 officers from a variety of agencies assisting with the manhunt for the shooter, including National Park Service, Pierce County Sheriff, FBI, Washington State Patrol, US Forest Service, City of Enumclaw, and Lewis County Sheriff.

Mount Rainier National Park will remain closed tomorrow.

Ranger Margaret Anderson, 34 years old, served at Mount Rainier for four years.She is survived by her husband, also a park ranger at Mount Rainier, and two young children.

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