A coordinated search effort involving more than 200 law enforcement personnel came to a close late Monday morning when an aircraft spotted a body face down in a creek bed at Mount Rainier National Park.
On Tuesday evening, the Pierce County Medical Examiner said the cause of death for Barnes was drowning. Hypothermia was listed as a secondary contributing factor.
Chuck Young with the National Park Service announced that Barnes' body was found in Paradise Creek above Narada Falls. A cause of death had not been determined but officals said it appeared Barnes suffered from exposure as he was wearing only jeans, a T-shirt and one shoe.
Barnes is also a suspect in a shooting in a Skyway apartment that left four people injured on New Year’s Eve.
The 24-year-old King County resident is a veteran of the Iraq war who friends said had a large collection of guns. He was discharged from the Army in 2009 after a DUI arrest, according to JBLM spokesman Major Chris Ophardt. He also had two restraining orders filed against him by the mother of his one-year-old child.
The shooting happened near the Longmire Ranger Station in Mount Rainier National Park just before 11 a.m. Sunday.
"Park Ranger Margaret Anderson set up a traffic block to intercept a vehicle that had failed to stop at a chain-up checkpoint,” Rainier National Park spokesperson Lee Taylor said.
“The driver opened fire on Ranger Anderson, killing her, and then fled on foot into the woods.”
Pierce County Sheriff's Department spokesperson Ed Troyer said the suspect drew his weapon and opened fire before Anderson had a chance to react.
"He immediately made a u-turn, came out, and opened fire on her," Troyer said. "Multiple rounds in the side of her car — she didn't have a chance, she never even exited the vehicle."
After the shooting, the suspect fled into the woods on foot.
Before responding officers and rangers could reach Anderson, the suspect fired at them using a long rifle. No one else was hit by the gunfire, but police were kept at bay for 90 minutes.
By the time help arrived on the scene, Anderson had died.
Inside the Barnes' abandoned vehicle officers found multiple weapons, ammunition, body armor and survival gear. Rainier National Park Ranger Kevin Bacher said Barnes may have been planning to hide in the woods after the New Year's Eve shooting in Skyway.
The park was closed following the shooting and troopers at the gate were turning visitors away.
At least 125 people who were in the park spent the night in the Jackson Visitor Center for their safety. They were escorted from the park by armed officers early Monday morning.
National Park Service rangers, Pierce County Sheriff's deputies, Washington State Patrol troopers and the FBI took part in the search for Barnes.
A fixed wing aircraft from Oregon as well as a U.S. Border Patrol helicopter, each equipped with heat-seeking cameras, were also dispatched to the area to help locate Barnes in the mountain terrain.
Anderson was 34 years old and a resident of Eatonville. She was the mother of two young daughters, ages 1 and 3, and worked as a ranger for the Park Service for about four years. Anderson was married to a fellow ranger and her husband was working Sunday at another location in the park when the shooting took place.
The park will reopen to the public on Saturday.
A Facebook page in Anderson's memory has also been created.