Search Is on for 'Dangerous' Arkansas Man Serving Life in Prison for Rape Who Escaped From Work Crew

Mug shot of Hartman from 2019
Arkansas State Police

Authorities are on the hunt for Samuel Hartman, a "dangerous," and potentially armed man who was serving a life sentence for rape and escaped from his work crew.

The search is on for an Arkansas man serving life in prison for rape after he escaped from a work crew on Friday, according to authorities.

The escaped man, Samuel Hartman, is an inmate at the East Arkansas Regional Unit of Brickys Prison, according to local outlet The Clarion Ledger.

Hartman has been in the custody of the Arkansas Division of Correction since Dec. 2, 2013. He appealed his conviction to the state's Supreme Court but was denied, according to the outlet.

Hartman has a history of "major guilty disciplinary violations" while incarcerated, including for possessing contraband, battery and sexual activity, according to the Arkansas Department of Corrections.

Hartman escaped while on assignment with a field maintenance crew located on State Highway 79, according to the Ledger. 

The Tunica County Sheriff’s Department searched an RV park Friday night after receiving a tip that a truck driven by Hartman had been seen there, according to Yahoo News.  

After the possible sighting, though students were released on-time, schools in the area were shutdown and all local businesses were told to be on high alert, according to the outlet. 

Authorities say the escaped man has used the alias Samual Paul Heartman and his last known address is on Persimmon Point Road in Magazine, Arkansas, according to the Ledger.

Police are also looking for two women, Hartman's sister Misty Hartman and his mother Linda Annette White, who investigators say may be aiding Hartman in his evading authorities.

Neither Hartman nor his relatives were found in the searched RV park, but police said evidence suggests Hartman may have planned to stay there for a while, according to reports 

Hartman’s vehicle, a white Chevy, was also spotted on Carp Drive in Tunica County, Mississippi, officials said.

The Tunica County Sheriff’s Office, DeSoto County SWAT team, and U.S. Marshals scoured the area Friday night. The Sheriff's Office reported finding a vehicle located on the Arkansas side of the Mississippi River and Arkansas State Police said they located two abandoned jet skis on a boat ramp that a farmer reported to have seen near Mhoon Landing Park. 

Due to the location of the jet skis, police believe they were used by at least Hartman and that he could have used a boat to escape, according to ABC 24.  

The jet skis are being processed by Mississippi Bureau of Investigation at this time, according to the outlet. 

Authorities asked people to be on the lookout for any vehicle matching the description of a white 2021 Chevy Z71 Trail Boss. The vehicle in question could have Arkansas license plate number 398 ZVY or no plate at all, according to ABC 24. In addition to Mississippi, investigators are looking at Tulsa, Oklahoma, and Wyoming, where Hartman allegedly has links. 

Hartman, 38, stands 5 feet, 9 inches, and weighs 230 pounds. He has tattoos of a heart, sword, the words “Forever & Always,” as well as the words “Sam-N-Christine,” according to the authorities.

Hartman, as well as his mother and sister, should be considered armed and dangerous, officials said. Anyone with information on Hartman's whereabouts, and anyone who believes they have seen Hartman, his mother or his sister, should call 911, authorities said.

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