SMITHFIELD, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Police said Christopher Knight, known locally as the "North Pond Hermit" burglarized dozens of camps, but he was particularly fond of taking food from the Pine Tree Camp.
Facilities Manager Harvey Chesley said he had been wanting to catch the hermit for years. Not only were hundreds of dollars of food stolen from the camp's kitchen at a time, but pieces of camping equipment kept disappearing. In the '80s and '90s, many people thought the things were just misplaced, but in the past decade, it was clear that there was a theif.
The camp set up security cameras last year, and got excellent pictures of the hermit coming into the kitchen, but no one recognized him. Then this year, Game Warden Terry Hughes rigged up lasers in the kitchen that set off an alarm at his home if anyone broke in. That is how Knight was caught.
Chesley said he got a call to come over to the camp and meet Knight. He said he was furious when he arrived, but then, "I wasn't angry anymore," Chesley said. "Kind of a pathetic figure. Someone who truly lived in the woods."
Chesley said Knight showed him the tools he kept with him to break into camps, and he later saw Knight's campsite. They also figured out they both went to Lawrence High School at the same time. Knight apologized to him, and he accepted it.