Peter Keller is suspected of killing his wife and daughter and the family pets.
Lynnettee and Kaylene Keller were found dead in their home. / King5.comThis photo provided by the King County Sheriff's Department on Friday, April 27, 2012 shows a bunker that deputies say belongs to a man suspected of killing his wife and daughter, and holing up for days in the Cascade foothills east of Seattle. Photo: King County Sheriff's Department / AP
Photo: Elaine Thompson / AP
Body found in mountain bunker
By GENE JOHNSON, ASSOCIATED PRESS / SeattlePI.com
Updated 12:11 p.m., Saturday, April 28, 2012
After a nearly 23-hour standoff, police blew up the top of an elaborate bunker in the Cascade Mountains on Saturday and found the body of a man inside — believed to be that of a survivalist wanted in the deaths of his wife and daughter last weekend.
The suspect appeared to have shot himself, King County sheriff's Sgt. Katie Larson said. Officials were awaiting positive identification of the body.
The raid ended a tense week for law enforcement officials who tried to track down 41-year-old Peter Keller, a gun enthusiast described by his family as having a "survivalist mentality." That Keller was likely armed and on the loose in an extremely popular hiking and mountain-biking area east of Seattle kept many people on edge.
Keller had spent eight years building the bunker into the side of Rattlesnake Ridge, police said. It was thoroughly camouflaged and had multiple levels.
SWAT teams spent a grueling seven hours on the mountainside Friday morning, virtually crawling over dangerously steep terrain slick with mud from recent rains, before they found the bunker. A number of officers were treated intravenously for dehydration, and one broke his ankle, said sheriff's Sgt. Cindi West said.
After long shifts, the officers appeared exhausted, their faces smeared with camouflage paint, as they rode down the mountain in sport-utility vehicles or armored carriers to be replaced by fresher teams.
SWAT officers who kept watch on the bunker through Friday night said they saw lights going on and off, and they believed its occupant had everything necessary to remain inside for a long time — including a generator, food, gas mask, bullet-resistant vest and many guns.
READ: HOW DID THEY FIND PETER KELLER IN WASHINGTON STATE RUGGED MOUNTAINS?