At least this fort was found by a US Forest Service Officer and not a news channel that was covering the news of a death by medieval booby traps. The traps were found as Officer Schoeffler was patrolling a popular trail in Utah walked into an area of the trail that had a manmade shelter full of booby traps. According to the Sheriff’s Office:, people could have died. The traps had death pits, and even falling spike traps like the one you see above.
On April 16, 2012, U.S. Forest Service Law Enforcement Officer James Schoeffler was on foot patrol in this area when he came across one of these shelters. This particular shelter is known locally as “The Fort”. Because of his time in the military Officer Schoeffler has extensive experience with identifying booby trap devices. As he investigated the shelter he noticed what appeared to be a trip wire near the ground at an entrance. Upon further investigation he discovered that the trip wire led to a booby trap device which was made with a large rock, sticks sharpened at both ends, and was held together with rope. This device was situated in such a way that when contact was made with the trip wire it would swing toward an unsuspecting hiker or camper. It was hung where it would most likely swing to and hit the head or face of the hiker or camper. In a second entrance to the shelter Officer Schoeffler found a second trip wire. This wire was configured so as to trip a person, possibly causing them to fall forward onto sharpened sticks placed in the ground.
I don’t really understand why somebody would want to plant these kinds of traps for unsuspecting joggers, but these two lunatics were arrested shortly after the Officer discovered the fort. The Sheriff’s office used Facebook to identify Benjamin Steven Rutkwoski and Kai Matthew Christensen. According to the Sheriff’s office they found evidence that these guys were still in the process of building more traps. [via NY Daily News]