Arkansas Supreme Court Faults Search, But Upholds Robbery Conviction

Feb 19, 2015

Arkansas' Supreme Court says police were wrong to barge into a bank robbery suspect's hotel room after receiving an anonymous tip, but it upheld the man's conviction because other evidence was so overwhelming.

Isaac Evans had wanted the court to reverse his conviction. Justices upheld his life sentence Thursday, saying eyewitness testimony was so strong that a nighttime police raid was a "harmless error."

The court said bank tellers and Evans' brother-in-law linked Evans to the February 2013 robbery at a Simmons Bank branch in Little Rock.

Police seized money, clothing, hair clippers and a fresh identification card from Evans' hotel room. The court said that even with the evidence thrown out, there was obvious evidence linking Evans to the crime.

Evans was sentenced as a habitual offender.