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Sightings Draw ADC Officials Back To Area

<p><strong>Escapee sought.</strong> A composite of what escaped murderer Tim Buffington could look like.</p>

Escapee sought. A composite of what escaped murderer Tim Buffington could look like.

In the last two weeks, law enforcement agencies have dealt with two reported sightings of Timothy Buffington in the county.

Buffington escaped from the Pine Bluff Unit of the Arkansas Department of Correction on June 21. He was reportedly seen in Logan County on Wednesday, July 30 and Wednesday, July 23, according to Logan Deputy Sheriff David Spicer. Both reported sightings were false alarms, Spicer said.

Buffington was convicted of first degree murder in Booneville in 1999. In 1998, Buffington, then 31, shot his ex-wife, 23-year-old Rhonda (Canada) Combs, in the back of the head with a rifle while she sat in her boyfriend’s pickup on Carolan Bridge, just southwest of the Booneville city limits.

Buffington was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

The first report that Buffington was in Logan County was on July 23, Spicer said.

“The Department of Correction sent some people, dogs and horses and searched an area in south Logan County but he was not found,” Spicer said.

Then, another reported sighting took place on July 30 in south Logan County.

“ADC contacted one of our deputies and told him they had received a tip about where Buffington might be hiding,” Spicer said. “It was off Highway 217 in the Sugar Grove area. A teenager was out at some property in Sugar Grove and saw a man wearing a camo jacket, wearing a floppy hat and carrying a gun.”

Deputies and ADC personnel with dogs were dispatched to the area and found a vacant house, Spicer said.

“There were multiple structures on the property and some appeared to have been occupied,” Spicer said. “They found an area outside where someone had started a fire.”

The deputies and ADC personnel didn’t find anyone that day. Later, though, additional information shed light on the reported sighting.

“Since then, we’ve found out that a husband and wive had gotten into an argument and the husband left to go cool down,” Spicer said. “We learned who it was and it wasn’t Buffington.”

Buffington is listed as five feet, six inches tall and weighing 182 pounds. He has a scar on his abdomen and back upper left arm and a tattoo on his right wrist, according to the ADC. Buffington’s last known address is 192 First Street in Booneville, according to the ADC.

The Arkansas Department of Correction is offering a reward of as much as $4,000 to anyone with information leading to the capture and arrest of Buffington. The reward has been made possible through donations made by prison employee associations.

Buffington is to be considered armed and dangerous. Anyone with information on his whereabouts can call the ADC at (870) 267-6421 or dial 911.

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