Manhunt expands for armed suspect Phillip Stroupe II in WNC

Phillip Michael Stroupe II
Phillip Michael Stroupe II

(WSPA) – A man who deputies say is armed with a gun remains on the loose in Pisgah National Forest.

Wednesday marks the fifth day of a search for Phillip Stroupe II.

Deputies say Stroupe was wanted on charges when he fled a traffic stop in a car and later stole a mountain bike before making his way into Pisgah National Forest where several law enforcement agencies have searched for him.

The search for Stroupe has been concentrated in the national forest in Transylvania County. But authorities in neighboring Henderson County said there was a possible sighting of the suspect there.

Alison Nock with the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office said deputies were notified that Stroupe may have been seen Monday night in the North Mills River Recreation Area.

The manhunt has been expanded to include that area.

Meanwhile, authorities say both Highway 276 and Davidson River Road have reopened. Attractions along the highway are expected to resume regular operations on Wednesday.

Stroupe, 39, is 5 feet 8 inches to 5 feet 10 inches tall, with a small build. He has a shaved head and a large, distinct tattoo on his neck just under his chin as well as tattoos on his arms and chest. Authorities say he’s considered armed and dangerous.

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