PUNKIN CENTER, Ariz. - As news of murder suspects Blane and Susan Barksdale's arrests spread, people in Punkin Center, an unincorporated area hidden away within the Tonto Basin near Roosevelt Lake, react to news of the arrests.
"We kind of figured that they only bring people, this many cops out when there's a kidnapping or a murder suspect someplace," said one person.
Federal authorities said Thursday about 50 officers surrounded a house in the area and arrested the couple. The Barksdales were accused of murder, and had been on the run for more than two weeks after escaping a prison transport van. The U.S. Marshals had been offering rewards of up to $10,000 for each suspect, but the agency announced Monday the reward for information leading directly to Blane's arrest was increased to $25,000. The two were also added to the U.S. Marshals 15 Most Wanted List.
Blane (left) and Susan (right) Barksdale. (Photo Courtesy: Navajo County Sheriff's Office)
One longtime resident said Thursday he watched around 50 officers surround a home, commanding the Barksdales to come out.
"We saw him with his hands behind him and they took him," said the resident.
Neighbors aren't sure how the Barksdales are connected with the homeowner, nor did they recognize them if they came outside.
"I don't know if anybody knew that they were here, and gosh, it could have been so much worse than it was, so thank God nobody was hurt," said Leslie Beridon. "People's lives could have been at stake, and I don't know if any amount of money is worth that. I would have turned them in no matter what."