Woman banned from Grand Teton in false report of missing man
JACKSON, Wyo (AP) — A woman accused of intentionally providing misinformation while searching for a missing man in Grand Teton National Park has been banned from the park and ordered to pay compensation.
Heather Mycoskie, 40, is to stay out of the park in northeast Wyoming for five years and pay $17,600 under a deferred prosecution agreement, park officials said in a statement Thursday.
Such agreements allow defendants to avoid prosecution if they meet certain conditions.
Mycoskie reportedly reported last June that she saw Cian McLaughlin, 27, of Jackson, the day he had disappeared nearly two weeks earlier and was heading to Taggart Lake because he was planning to jump off his favorite rock in the water.
The information turned out to be false, and other people told investigators that Mycoskie fabricated the sighting to ensure search efforts continued, according to the statement from park officials.
All other sightings placed McLaughlin, who remains missing after his June 8, 2021 disappearance, on trails heading to another area of the park, the statement said.
The alleged forgery means officials spent more than 500 fruitless hours researching, investigating and writing reports, according to the statement.
The deferred prosecution agreement allows Mycoskie to continue using the Jackson Hole airport, which is located in Grand Teton, and the main highway through the park, as long as it does not stop or recreate .
Mycoskie’s attorney until the deferred prosecution agreement was signed in February, Darci Phillips, has since been appointed as a Wyoming district judge and declined to comment on Friday.
Mycoskie, formerly of Jackson, recently moved to Costa Rica. She did not immediately return an Instagram message on Friday seeking comment.
She was previously married to TOMS Shoes founder Blake Mycoskie, who sold his Jackson home in November, reported the Jackson Hole News&Guide.
Researchers plan to continue searching for McLaughlin this summer.