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Danelo Cavalcante capture: Doctor explains emotional toll of manhunt

Doctor speaks on the mental health effects the Danelo Cavalcante manhunt had on local community
Doctor speaks on the mental health effects the Danelo Cavalcante manhunt had on local community 02:09

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) --The stress and anxiety the manhunt for Danelo Cavalcante caused was felt by many people, especially for residents who live in Chester County. 

"This just affected the community, just looking over our shoulder, not being able to sleep, is he at my door," one woman said. 

A community on edge for two weeks left many people in Chester County haunted by the escaped murderer on the run.

"This impacted a lot of people and took a lot of mental energy from the community," Dr. Philip Izzo said. 

Dr. Izzo, a psychiatrist with Main Line Health, said it's understandable that people would be stressed and anxious. The convict evaded capture, stole a van, broke into homes, took items, including a rifle, and stayed on the move with authorities in hot pursuit. 


"This is people's safety that is being put into jeopardy and called into question," Izzo said. "It strikes people where they live, which is a place they want to feel safe."

Izzo said it was especially traumatic for Chester County, which is a rural area where many people may feel safer being away from the crime often associated with city living.


"A convicted murder felon on the loose brings you right into that chaos," he said. 

Dr. Izzo said many of his patients in Chester County became obsessed about the manhunt with many experiencing all kinds of anxiety. 

"This is an additional stressor that people have to deal with in their lives on top of ordinary stressors they have do deal with, family or work," Dr. Izzo said. "It can produce anything from sleeplessness, panic attacks, feelings of being down or depressed, variations in appetite."

He said even with the capture and the threat now gone, some people might have lingering effects. 

"Even something like PTSD can occur from something like this if you're really feeling threatened," Izzo said. 

Some ways to cope with anxiety include exercise, meditation, deep breathing and getting enough sleep.

"I'm hoping now that the manhunt is over and he's back in custody that people can feel more rested and secure," Izzo said. 

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