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Man missing for 3 days found injured in Northern MN woods

He'd vanished possibly "under the influence of unknown substances" on Tuesday

Authorities in Beltrami County say a local man reported missing by his family has been found alive.

Derrick G. Harper Jr., a 31-year-old from the Leech Lake Indian Reservation, disappeared on the night of Tuesday, September 11, according to a news release from the Beltrami County Sheriff's Office.

After his family reported him missing early Friday morning, local authorities undertook a large-scale search that included the Mississippi River and "the heavily wooded neighborhood" of Brook Lake Township where Harper lives. 

Air support from the State Patrol, a "mounted posse" and even a drone were part of the search effort, but it was searchers on the ground who found the clue that ultimately led to Harper.

An exuberant photo update from the Beltrami Co. sheriff

An exuberant photo update from the Beltrami Co. Sheriff

The sheriff's news release says the searchers found a piece of clothing that was identified as belonging to Harper; he was discovered shortly thereafter "injured and extremely dehydrated" in an adjacent area.

Authorities say his current condition is "unknown."

The circumstances of Harper's disappearance are not clear, but when he was reported missing, family members told authorities that he "may have been under the influence of unknown substances" at the time.

Meanwhile, a Facebook post from a family member asking for help in the search said that Harper had disappeared "after police dropped him off by his house."

The area where he was found is about 18 miles east of Bemidji. 


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