Suspect in Hiker's Disappearance is in Court

BLAIRSVILLE, Ga. (AP) - A judge in Georgia is denying bond for the man accused of kidnapping a missing hiker.

Authorities are still searching for 24-year-old Meredith Emerson in the north Georgia mountains. They've said they believe she is dead.

Gary Hilton didn't speak during his first court appearance Monday.

His attorney didn't enter a plea on Hilton's behalf. The lawyer was assigned to the case quickly, in hopes of encouraging Hilton's cooperation with authorities in finding Emerson.

Investigators have said Hilton was the last person seen with Emerson on a hiking trail.

Hilton was detained Friday. According to a warrant, he had tried to use Emerson's credit card.

It also says three bloody pieces of clothing and a bloodstained piece of a car's seat belt were found in a trash bin beside a convenience store where Hilton had used a pay phone.

Authorities are also looking into a possible link with another case --- the presumed killing of a couple from North Carolina in October.

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


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