Thousand Hills State Park re-opens as hunt for murder suspect continues

Jesse Darrell Rongey wanted by Adair County Sheriff for Murder

Missouri State Parks reports that, after consultation with law enforcement officials, Thousand Hills State Park near Kirksville reopened on August 12th at 8 am. This includes the campground, store, marina, dining, and lodging operations.

The park had been closed due to law enforcement searching for Jesse Rongey, a Kirksville man wanted for murder. Law enforcement began searching the Youngstown Trail Area on July 29th after a possible sighting of Rongey.

The wooded trails at Thousand Hills State Park will remain closed, and visitors may see an increased presence of law enforcement.

Missouri State Parks notes that public safety and not interfering with law enforcement operations are “paramount.” Visitors are encouraged to report suspicious activity to a park representative or call the Adair County Sheriff’s Office at 660-665-5621.

U. S. Marshals reported Rongey has been wanted since July 22nd. U. S. Marshals are offering a reward of up to $5,000. Pictures of Rongey have been posted on the Adair County Sheriff’s Office’s Facebook page.

Online court information shows Rongey has been charged with the felonies of first-degree murder, armed criminal action, unlawful possession of a firearm, tampering with physical evidence in a felony prosecution, unlawful use of a weapon, and abandonment of a corpse.

The Adair County Sheriff’s Office reported Stephen Munn’s remains were discovered in the Youngstown Trail Area in July.