Several recreational areas in the Ozark-St. Francis National Forest have been closed because of a search for a felon from Mississippi. The release:

Ozark-St. Francis National Forest managers have temporarily closed several recreation areas on the Sylamore Ranger District as the search for a felon by local law enforcement agencies continues.

The areas closed are the North Sylamore Creek Hiking Trail, the Syllamo Mountain Bike Trail, Gunner Pool, Barkshed, and the Blanchard Springs day use area, including Mirror Lake. Guided tours at Blanchard Springs Caverns will remain open.

Authorities are searching for Samuel Ray, who was last seen at Gunner Pool Campground on Sept. 9. Ray is wanted on an Aggravated Assault with a Weapon charges from the State of Mississippi, according to the Stone County Sheriff’s Department.

“We are asking forest visitors to avoid those areas as law enforcement personnel continue their search for Samuel Ray,” said Jim McCoy, Sylamore District Ranger.

Anyone with information of Samuel Ray’s whereabouts is encouraged to call the Stone County Sheriff’s office at 870-269-3825.

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