Frigid fugitive learns not to hide in freezing Little River

ROCKFORD, Tenn. (AP) -- A Knoxville man found out that February in the East Tennessee mountains isn't the best time to try hiding from the law underwater.

The Blount County Sheriff's Office says James Earl Jett fled an accident in Rockford after deputies found out the truck he was driving was reported stolen.

Jett was found by a K-9 unit in the nearby Little River, which flows from Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Only his face was above the surface, with his body concealed by a submerged tree.

The high temperature in the area on Wednesday was 34 degrees with a dusting of snow.

Authorities said the 33-year-old refused to come up and he had to be "manually extracted." He was treated for hypothermia at a local hospital and released.

Jett was charged with leaving the scene of an accident and is expected to be charged in Knox County in the theft of the truck.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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