Arkansas Courts

File photo: Former Circuit Court Judge Michael Maggio outside of federal court in Little Rock.
Brian Chilson / Arkansas Times

Federal prosecutors say a former Arkansas circuit judge should be sentenced to 10 years in prison for lowering a jury award in exchange for campaign donations from a nursing home operator.

In a filing Tuesday, U.S. attorneys say former Faulkner County Circuit Judge Michael Maggio lied to the Arkansas Ethics Commission, failed to cooperate under his plea agreement and failed a lie detector test when asked about details of the alleged bribery.

On Monday, Maggio filed a request asking for leniency and probation when he's sentenced Thursday.

Luther Sutter Dennis Milligan
KATV, Channel 7 News

A Little Rock attorney has filed a civil lawsuit against the state treasurer over an incident last month that turned into a shoving match.

Attorney Luther Sutter filed the lawsuit Monday in Pulaski County Circuit Court.

Sutter represents a former treasurer's office employee who filed a federal lawsuit against Arkansas Treasurer Dennis Milligan and his chief of staff alleging defamation.

Before a deposition in the case in February, Sutter entered the room on his cellphone and cursed. Sutter says he apologized to Milligan's wife, who was in the room.

Michael Maggio
Brian Chilson / Arkansas Times

A former state judge in Arkansas is asking that probation be considered for his sentence in a bribery case where he admitted to lowering a jury award in a lawsuit in exchange for campaign donations from a nursing home operator.

Attorneys for former Faulkner County Circuit Judge Michael Maggio asked Monday that he be sentenced below the guidelines in the bribery case. Maggio is scheduled to be sentenced Thursday and faces up to 10 years in prison.

A federal lawsuit filed against the Benton County sheriff says the elected official had a list of employees he planned to dismiss after the March 1 primary election.

Three sheriff's office employees filed the suit against Sheriff Kelley Cradduck on Thursday. They're suing for violation of their free speech rights and association, along with civil rights. They also allege there was an Arkansas Whistle Blowers Act violation because the sheriff's behavior is in retaliation to the employee's cooperation with a state police investigation against him.

ASU standoff
KATV, Channel 7 News

  The attorney for a man charged with taking a gun onto the Arkansas State University campus wants the trial moved out of Craighead County.

Brad Bartelt is charged in connection with the Dec. 10 incident in which he was arrested on campus after a standoff with police. Police say Bartelt had a 12-gauge shotgun and containers of gasoline and propane with him.

A federal judge has ordered Arkansas to pay more than $25,000 in attorney's fees and costs for its unsuccessful bid to have the U.S. Supreme Court revive a 12-week abortion ban.

U.S. District Judge Susan Webber Wright on Friday ordered the state to pay $24,780 in attorney's fees and $748 in costs for its unsuccessful petition before the nation's highest court on the law. Wright struck down the law as unconstitutional in 2014 and a federal appeals court panel upheld Wright's decision last year.

A suspended Arkansas judge has pleaded not guilty to a negligent homicide charge filed after his son was found dead in a hot car.


Garland County Circuit Judge Wade Naramore is accused in the death of his 18-month-old, Thomas, last July. He entered a plea Friday and a trial was set for June 14.


Arrest records say Naramore told investigators he forgot to drop his son off at day care and left him in the back seat of a hot car for about five hours. The child died at the scene.


Luther Sutter Dennis Milligan
KATV, Channel 7 News

Arkansas Treasurer Dennis Milligan and an attorney representing a former state employee in a defamation lawsuit have decided not to seek arrest warrants for each other related to their shoving match last month.

Pulaski County Prosecuting Attorney Larry Jegley says both Milligan and attorney Luther Sutter gave statements about the Feb. 9 incident and the office issued complaints against each of the men. Jegley says neither decided to seek charges.

Federal prosecutors say a former Arkansas circuit judge is switching legal arguments in an effort to withdraw his guilty plea and avoid sentencing in a federal bribery case.

Former Judge Michael Maggio admitted in January 2015 to allegations that he had accepted $50,000 in campaign donations from an unnamed nursing home owner and a lobbyist in exchange for reducing a $5.2 million jury award in a negligence case involving one of the nursing home owner's facilities.

A race for Chief Justice on the Arkansas Supreme Court has drawn record-breaking amounts of spending as a current Associate Justice on the court and a circuit Judge contend for the seat.