Accustomed to sleeping under the stars, Christopher Knight – the man dubbed the ‘North Pond Hermit’ – is now behind bars in the US following his arrest for theft.
The 47-year-old from Maine lived for 27 years in the wild by stealing food from local camps and residents. Police have said the number of break-ins could be over 1,000 and have been searching for him for years.
He claims that the brush with the law was his first human contact since 1990.
His solitary life unraveled when he triggered a motion sensor at a children’s camp as he allegedly took hundreds of dollars worth of food and other supplies.
He has been charged with one count of burglary but other charges may follow.
Police said Knight had confessed to raiding that camp about 50 times, taking food, clothing, propane gas tanks and other essentials.
“Everything he owned, except for his eyeglasses, was stolen,” said Stephen McCausland, a spokesman with the Maine State Police.
Knight told the officers who arrested him that he had spoken with only one other person during his years of solitude – a lone hiker who he passed on a trail in 1990.
The hermit survived the brutal winters of central Maine, where winter overnight temperatures can drop well below freezing, by huddling in multiple sleeping bags inside a tent.