Photo courtesy of Maine Dept. of Public Safety
Rome, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- With two folk songs written about the North Pond Hermit, he is rapidly becoming a folk hero in Maine. However, outdoor experts disagree about whether Christopher Knight's tall tale is totally true.
Knight was arrested on April 4 as he was robbing the Pine Tree Camp for Children and Adults. Since 1945, the camp has provided services, including summer camping experiences for people with physical and developmental disabilities.
Knight told police that he was the North Pond Hermit and that he had robbed around a thousand camps. He said he had lived alone in the woods since late April of 1986 and had only spoken to one human during that period.
He was arrested and taken to the Kennebec County Jail.
Since that time, a groundswell of interest has developed over his story.
Police who arrested him and many in the area are absolutely convinced his story is true. Others are not convinced and a growing number of camp owners in the area are upset that police did not do more to catch the pilferer.
"You can't convince me that nobody knew, not in this day and age," said Geogette Kanach who teaches survival skills for the Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife's Becoming an Outdoor Woman (BOW) program.
The encampment was about 200 yards off a camp road and 200 yards North Pond. The total patch of woods was perhaps one square mile.
Retired Warden Lieutenant Pat Dorion thought Knight's story was true. " To think that somebody could live by themselves with no human contact to survive the elements when you hear about all the different things that he has to sustain himself from that type of environment, I think anybody could do it. Why would anyone chose to do it, we'll probably never know."
Knight is reportedly in the general prison population at the Kennebec County Jail where he is said to be getting along fine, playing cards and living on three square meals a day.
Stan Keach has written a song entitled, "What the North Pond Hermit Knows." Follow the link if you want to take a listen.