Ex-cop manhunt ends in tragedy


York Daily Record

Robert Vicosa’s two daughters

Owen Hill, Co-Editor-in-Chief

An ex-police officer in Baltimore County was found dead Thursday along with his two daughters. Despite requests for a peaceful surrender, the four-day manhunt ended on Nov. 18. 

Robert Vicosa, his two daughters and Sargent Tia Bynum were found dead inside a vehicle in Smithsburg, Maryland. He was accused of attacking his wife in Pennsylvania, taking her captive, and running away with their two daughters. Vicosa was fired from the Baltimore County Police Department in late August. 

In a news release, State Police called the deaths a murder-suicide. The manhunt went all the way from Cockeysville to York County, Pennsylvania, and sent police after them from two states and federal agencies. Police said that the couple had been on the run after kidnapping Vicosa’s daughters from his estranged wife in York County over, then robbing and carjacking the people they encountered while trying to stay ahead of authorities. 

Thursday morning, police chiefs from Maryland and Pennsylvania urged the couple to drop the girls off at a safe location before anyone or anything else was hurt or damaged.

“Please, get these two innocent and precious children to a safe location,” added Baltimore County Police Chief Melissa Hyatt at the news conference. 

According to CBS Baltimore, investigators believed Vicosa was helped by Bynum, who was a Baltimore County police sergeant and a close friend.

The two made a plan to terrorize Vicosa’s estranged wife, according to court documents. They drugged her, tied her up, and left her in the house for hours.

York County District Attorney, Dave Sunday, announced that his office will be creating a special committee focused on domestic violence. This would be a very impactful committee to try and prevent any further events or tragedies from occurring.