NC hiker tied to a tree was assaulted, officials say

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N.C. Hiker Tied to a Tree Was Assaulted, Officials Say

North Carolina officials haven't released many additional details about the missing hiker found tied to a tree last week, but they did confirm she was assaulted and that authorities are looking for a suspect.

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The chief ranger at the Blue Ridge Parkway national park confirmed the assault to The Asheville Citizen-Times but added the "information the [National Park Service] is going to release has been released."

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The park service says it's investigating the attack and wants to protect the privacy of those involved.

The assaulted hiker, a 64-year-old woman who hasn't been named, was released from a local hospital last Thursday, hours after she was discovered tied to a tree near one of the park's popular viewpoints.

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The park service later described a suspect as a white 50-year-old male with salt-and-pepper hair and an unkempt appearance.

Despite the ongoing investigation, officials say there's no threat to the public and have opted not to close any facilities.

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