Hikers saddened by the loss of one of their own; man in custody after assault on Appalachian Trail


James L. Jordan 30, of West Yarmouth, Massachusetts, was arrested in the early morning hours of Saturday, May 11, on a federal criminal complaint.

Jordan is charged with one count of murder within the special maritime territorial jurisdiction of the United States and one count of assault with the intent to murder within the special maritime territorial jurisdiction of the United States.

Hikers on the trails are glad that he is now off the trails.

Larry Riddle owns Crazy Larry’s Hostel right along the Appalachian Trail in Damascus, VA. Damascus is about an hour away from Wythe County, VA where the deadly stabbing occurred along the trail. 

Riddles says that he usually doesn’t hear of criminal activity on the trails and was shocked to hear about the death of a hiker.

“I probably interact with 20 to 30 people a day but that’s about a little bit more that’s coming through here right now because it’s hiking season. It saddens me because it’s just senseless,” said Riddle.

Riddle said he’s heard stories about hikers coming in contact with Jordan before.

“I’ve had customers like back before this even happened. I had a couple guys that stayed with me that told me he came into their camp and he was running his mouth,” Riddle explained.

He continued to say that the hikers shared some choice words with Jordan and asked him to leave.

James Jordan had been threatening hikers on the trails on the Tennessee and North Carolina border just a month ago.

PREVIOUS STORY: Police arrest man accused of threatening hikers on the Appalachian Trail

He pleaded guilty to criminal impersonation among other charges.

Jordan received probation and was ordered to pay fines but ended up back on the trails.

Hikers like Preston Woolard are saddened and shocked by the loss.

“We push ourselves to the limits and we have people who come out and do this and that’s a sad factor,” said Woolard.

NEW DETAILS: Court documents reveal what happened leading up to AT murder

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