Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Wednesday summary

FOX16 reports several persons attending a community meeting put on by a so-called “parents group” asked that it stop personal attacks on school board president Katherine Mitchell, who is alleged to have failed to properly report $6,000 in personal income.

The state medical examiner has ruled Pope County Detention Center inmate James Jamerson died of “arteriosclerotic heart disease” with an 80 percent narrowing of the left coronary artery. Two inmates filed written grievances after Jamerson’s death claiming guards neglected Jamerson until he became unresponsive. A third inmate, in a letter to The Russellville Courier, claimed Jamerson’s repeated requests for medical attention were denied.

Governor Mike Beebe has named Rick Watkins of Little Rock as the newest commissioner of the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission. He is the owner and president of the Watkins Company, a regional printing and advertising-distribution company.

Arkansas' Democrat senators stuck with their party on key votes to revive a far-reaching immigration bill and move forward legislation to change how labor unions organize. The immigration reform bill once thought dead was resurrected in a 64-35 vote that reopened debate for more amendments to be considered.

Two medical institutions previously supplying athletic trainers to Fort Smith Public Schools have informed the district they can no longer provide the services and will phase them out over the next two years. The two positions, once funded fully by the school, will cost a total of $95,825 based on a 213-day contract.

A new coal-burning power plant in Arkansas would be a bad investment for the state, members of the Sierra Club of Arkansas said at a news conference on the steps of the state Capitol.

Entergy can soon expect to pay 9.6 percent less than a year ago. They will still pay 8.1 percent more than current rates.

South Korean officials cleared four Tyson Foods Inc. plants to export beef into their market, a step toward normalizing beef trade with the United States.

Gov. Mike Beebe says that if he has to take a personal or political trip, he’ll go by car or by commercial flight but won’t use the state police airplane.

The Arkansas Supreme Court granted Pulaski County a temporary stay Tuesday from releasing e-mails sent and received by former comptroller Ron Quillin.

Alvin Jackson, an inmate sentenced to die for killing a corrections officer, held prison staff at bay by brandishing a 10-inch shank before being subdued by rubber pellets. Officers used pellets to subdue Jackson, who was being transferred to another cell.

A middle-aged El Dorado man, with known mental problems and said to fling bricks in retaliation against rock-throwing youngsters, is charged with capital murder in the death of 9-year-old DeMotric Moore, who was shot and killed while retrieving his bike from a schoolyard. “I’ve had it with these kids and the rock throwing,” Jonathan Watts reportedly told arresting police officers.

A Jonesboro local man who toted a gun to Circuit Court was arrested before he could carry out an alleged threat in the courtroom. Kevin Dale Brady was taken into custody after police were alerted that the man had brought a loaded a .38-caliber Derringer handgun to the courtroom located inside the main courthouse complex.

A Conway man is charged with felony second-degree battery after his arrest over the weekend. Bond was set at $20,000 at Faulkner County Circuit Court for Donald Ray Hobbs, who according to police, beat a man with a baseball bat and punched a woman in the mouth.

A retired high school teacher was ordered to be placed on an electronic monitoring system for four months as part of his sentence after pleading to a charge that he sexually assaulted a teenage boy. Larry Kennedy pleaded no contest to fourth-degree sexual assault, a Class A misdemeanor, in Sebastian County District Court. The charge was reduced from second-degree sexual assault, a Class B felony. Kennedy was a math teacher at Southside High School and retired after a 37-year career in 2005.

A Pine Bluff man arrested in Lincoln County is facing 20 felony counts of dog fighting, as well as 40 misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals and illegally impounding animals. Anthony Lynn Walker, was released from custody after posting a $2,500 bond.

A Craighead County woman who falsely reported she was abducted and raped on Valentine's Day will serve seven days in jail. Victoria L. Simonton recanted her story six weeks after the report, saying it was a lie. She was then charged with filing a false report of a crime.

A Hot Springs police officer is on administrative leave after a videotaped incident involving the arrest of six local skateboarders. The YouTube video reportedly shows the officer on top of one of the youngsters, handcuffing, putting a headlock on another, and threatening pepper spray.

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