Local & Regional News

Arkansas local and regional news

The Fab Four from Liverpool – who made a trip through Northeast Arkansas more than 50 years ago – were big fans of the music from the region, an author of a new book about The Beatles said Thursday.

Ivor Davis, who wrote the book, “The Beatles and Me on Tour,” will visit Walnut Ridge Friday and Saturday as part of the Beatles at the Ridge Festival.


Two University of Arkansas researchers working on a promising new material to create more efficient solar cells will lead a corps of Arkansas scientists chosen to develop the next generation of photovoltaic devices used in space missions, the university announced on Thursday.

Arkansas prosecutors have charged two more teenagers in connection with the shooting deaths of their friend's grandparents.

Faulkner County prosecutors filed first-degree murder charges Thursday against Conner Atchley and Anastasia Roberts, who are both 17. Both are charged as adults.

Investigators say Atchley and Roberts were present when Robert and Patricia Cogdell were fatally shot in their Conway home in July.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson and Education Commissioner Johnny Key posing for picturse with 15 regional finalists.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

Four teachers were named finalists for the Arkansas Teacher of the Year Award on Thursday. The governor and education commissioner had praise for the profession, in particular teachers in STEM fields, at a ceremony at the state Capitol. Some educators expressed afterward a belief that the Republican administration’s policies are sometimes contrary to teacher expectation on decision making authority.

2016 State Finalists:

Meghan Ables: 11th Grade English/Literacy, Stuttgart School District

Planned Parenthood asked a federal judge Thursday for a temporary restraining order or injunction against the cancelation of its Medicaid contract in Arkansas.

Organizers for the Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival, scheduled for October 9-18, announced high profile guests who will be participating.

From a festival press release:

Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art recently acquired Maya Angelou’s Quilt of Life, 1989, (acrylic on canvas and painted, dyed and pieced fabrics) by Faith Ringgold, from the art collection of the late author and activist, Maya Angelou. The work hung in Angelou’s home and was commissioned by Oprah Winfrey for Angelou’s 61st birthday.

According to the museum, Ringgold is well-known for her painted story quilts, “which unite a tradition of representational painting with the rich history of quilting in the African-American community.”

A former West Memphis city councilman has admitted to being an intermediary who helped pass bribes to the former deputy director of the Arkansas Department of Human Services.

Former councilman Phillip Carter pleaded guilty Tuesday to a federal conspiracy charge. The deputy director, Steven Jones, pled guilty last October to conspiracy and bribery charges for providing assistance two mental health companies in exchange for gifts.

Trinity Behavioral Health Care and Maxus Inc. were suspended from the state's Medicaid program last year after the state learned of the scheme.

Arkansas Dept. of Correction

The Arkansas Supreme Court has upheld the death sentence of an inmate convicted of killing his cellmate at a maximum security prison.

Robert Holland was convicted of capital murder in the 2012 strangulation of Matthew Scheile. According to court records, Holland had refused to have a cellmate but agreed to accept Scheile in his cell on Dec. 7, 2012. That same night, Scheile was found dead in the cell they shared at the Cummins unit.

A Springdale-based charity is the only entity in Arkansas approved to help resettle Syrian refugees who may qualify under the Obama administrations recent plans to take in an additional 10,000 people fleeing the Middle East conflict. The Springdale branch of Catholic Immigration Services is among some 180 other processing centers around the U.S. on a list compiled by the U.S. State Department.