Thursday, April 05, 2007

Holy Thursday summary

Controversy continues to surround Arkansas Athletic Director Frank Broyles, after the sudden departure of newly hired basketball coach Dama Altman, questions about abusive emails from a booster directed to a student-athlete, the distribution of that email by the head football coaches wife, the resignation of the football offensive coordinator, and the departure of two star offensive football players, culminating in Broyles’ forced retirement, two University of Arkansas basketball players tested positive for marijuana use, and one is being disciplined for academic shortcomings, the school announced Wednesday.

As the search for a Razorback basketball coach enters a new phase, after the sudden departure of newly hired coach Dana Altman and the refusal of Billy Gillespie and John Calipari, a search firm has been retained by the University of Arkansas to assist in the hiring process.

State regulators have closed an Arkadelphia retirement home after an unannounced inspection sparked by a resident’s complaint over a collapsed ceiling.

Immigrants in Benton and Washington counties contributed $6.1 million to the state budget's bottom line in 2004, a study released this week shows. The study, commissioned by the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation and conducted by the Urban Institute in Washington, D.C., also showed Arkansas had the fastest-growing Hispanic population between 2000 and 2005, and about 51 percent of immigrants in the state are undocumented.

A Marion man, in a disagreement with his brother-in-law, backed a car into a crowd, killing his 17-month-old niece. Kintrell Patterson is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Jerkala Clark. He also faces a first-degree battery charge for breaking the leg of the child’s father, Jerome Clark, 29, whom he hit with his car.

A former assistant principal at Melbourne High School faces an indictment issued by a federal grand jury in Little Rock on charges related to the interstate transportation of minors with the intent to engage in illegal sexual conduct. Steven Mitchell of Pineville is named in a 12-count indictment accusing him of committing acts against some of his former students while on school-related field trips out of state.

A judge says he will rule this morning on defense motions to dismiss most of the state’s charges against former Lonoke Police Chief Jay Campbell and his wife, Kelly Campbell, including the principal count of operating a “continuing criminal organization or enterprise.” Defense attorneys argue that the state failed to meet its burden of proof during 17 days of testimony by prosecution witnesses before a Lonoke County Circuit Court jury.

Fayetteville police are investigating the deaths of a man and woman found Wednesday morning inside their new apartment. The couple, who were boyfriend and girlfriend, moved into Club at the Creek Apartments earlier this week. Authorities called their deaths suspicious.

The state Court of Appeals upheld a ruling Wednesday that allowed a Washington County man's name to be placed on a state registry of suspected child abusers even though a jury found him innocent of committing a crime.

North Little Rock is in violation of its own city sign code and must request a waiver for the electronic marquee in front of Dickey-Stephens Park, city officials said Wednesday.

Pete Laven has been named to replace Bill Valentine as General Manager of the Arkansas Travelers baseball team. Valentine’s new restaurant will be opening at the ballpark later this month.

Some Altheimer-area patrons of the Dollarway School District are planning to launch legal action against a millage increase approved by voters in a March 13 special election. Dollarway Superintendent Thomas Gathen has publicly admitted that incorrect figures were mistakenly advertised during the election campaign. The amounts of tax hikes on homes were listed at about half of their actual levels.

Dues in the Wooster volunteer fire district are now mandatory.

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