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The public is being asked to stay out of the state Route 97, Blewett Pass, Mineral Springs area as law enforcement is conducting an active manhunt for a wanted and potentially armed suspect, according to a news release from the Kittitas County Sheriff's Office at 11:30 a.m. Sunday.

The release states that Forest Service Road 9738 and its spur roads are closed. Call 911 for to report anything suspicious including thefts from campsites. Do not pick up any hitchhikers in the area or attempt to make contact with suspect.

All known associated vehicles have been located and impounded. Suspect is believed to be on foot. The manhunt is associated with a missing person, 41-year-old Ian Eckles of Kent who was last known to be in the area of FS9738 last weekend.

The suspect of the manhunt was found in possession of Ian Eckles’ vehicle and evaded law enforcement despite an extensive ground and air search by multiple agencies. Another vehicle stolen in King County was also found with Eckles’ vehicle. That stolen vehicle is connected with multiple crimes in Kittitas County. The search for the suspect has expanded Sunday and the public is asked to stay out of the area.

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