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Two Campers Arrested For Drug, Weapons Violations

Hot Springs National Park

National Park News

Ranger Clint Forte was on patrol in Gulpha Gorge Campground on the afternoon of January 29th when he came upon two people parked at a campsite who’d failed to pay the required camping fees. While Forte was attempting to identify the male driver, he ran from the campground, crossing Gulpha Gorge Creek and fleeing up the adjacent mountainside. Forte kept an eye on his female companion while coordinating a pursuit. Rangers David Van Nest and David Anderson responded from the nearby ranger station and Van Nest chased the man into the woods. After about a half mile, the man surrendered, saying that he was an asthmatic and couldn’t breathe. Van Nest took him into custody, called for an ambulance, and got him inhaler treatment. Another camper subsequently told rangers that the woman had meanwhile entered their vehicle, removed an item, thrown it into the creek, and returned to the site. Forte found just under 48 grams of marijuana in the vehicle along with scales, empty plastic baggies, and other items consistent with possession of narcotics with intent to deliver. The man was found to have a suspended driver’s license and four Hot Springs PD warrants out against him. A 9mm semi-automatic handgun was recovered from Gorge Creek, which was found to have been stolen in Garland County. Both the man and woman face multiple weapons, drugs, and interfering charges. Rangers are assisting Garland County Sheriff’s Department deputies with the weapon investigation.



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