Okmulgee man suspected in park slaying arrested in Wyoming

Saturday, October 6th 2001, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ An observant Yellowstone National Park employee in Wyoming helped authorities find a man suspected in the killing of a McAlester woman.

Eric Jacobsen, 36, was arrested without incident about 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Kym Koch, a spokeswoman for the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation, said Friday.

Cherokee County prosecutors have charged Jacobsen with first-degree murder in the Sept. 25 death of Rebecca Dawn Smith.

Maintenance workers found Smith's body along a jogging trail at Sequoyah State Park near Hulbert. Smith, 50, had been stabbed twice in the neck and strangled, an autopsy showed.

Her missing car helped lead investigators to Jacobsen, who became a suspect after his ex-wife and others told authorities they saw him with Smith before her death. Jacobsen, of Okmulgee, and Smith may have met while they were patients at the Carl Albert Mental Health Center, investigators said.

``The suspect had been camping in Yellowstone for four days,'' Koch said. ``He was still driving the victim's red 1990 Oldsmobile Cutlass.

``The park employee noticed Jacobsen acting suspiciously and wrote down his tag. Park rangers ran the license number and found out the car was stolen and Jacobsen was wanted for murder.''

Jacobsen has waived extradition and Oklahoma authorities will retrieve him next week, Koch said.

He is being held at a jail in Lander, Wyo.