Arkansas Crime

A former Arkansas women's prison chaplain accused of coercing inmates into sex acts has pleaded guilty to three counts of sexual assault.

Prosecuting Attorney Henry Boyce says 67-year-old Kenneth Dewitt pleaded guilty on Tuesday in Jackson County Circuit Court. Boyce says Dewitt agreed to three concurrent 10-year prison sentences with five years suspended on each count. Formal sentencing is set for Aug. 3.

McPherson Prison Unit in Newport.
Arkansas Department Of Correction

A preliminary trial date has been set for a former Arkansas women's prison chaplain charged with 50 counts of sexual assault after authorities say he coerced three inmates into engaging in sexual acts.

Kenneth Dewitt has pleaded not guilty to the charges. A Jackson County Circuit Court judge agreed Wednesday to combine the charges brought on behalf of the three women into one trial, preliminarily set for Aug. 11.

State Rep. Greg Leding (D-Fayetteville) speaking with Arkansas Department of Higher Education Dr. Brett Powell.
Jacob Kauffman/KUAR News

Arkansas lawmakers are trying to get a grasp on the incomplete picture of sexual assaults on college campuses. One legislative effort is in an early stage that will stretch until July of next year.

Hailing from the heart of the University of Arkansas system, Fayetteville, Democratic State Representative Greg Leding is leading the effort to analyze how Arkansas colleges deal with issues of sexual assault on campus.

“One of the reasons we launched this study was to drill down and find out what the students are seeing that maybe the rest of us aren’t,” said Leding.

Kenton Buckner LRPD Little Rock POlice CHief
Michael Hibblen

Little Rock's Police Chief is reaching his second anniversary on the job.

With crime rates at their lowest in decades and use of force incidents dropping in the city, Kenton Buckner explains his views on policing, race, use of force, and his goals for Little Rock.

A Searcy man has been sentenced to 40 years in prison in the death of his 2-year-old son.

Forty-three-year-old Jeffery Clifton was sentenced Friday to 30 years for second-degree murder in the death of Malik Drummond and to 10 more years for abuse of a corpse.

Clifton pleaded no contest to the charges Friday after the murder charge was reduced from capital murder, which could have resulted in a death penalty or life in prison if Clifton were convicted.

Governor Hutchinson's Son Arrested On Felony Drug Charge

May 23, 2016
William Asa Hutchinson III
Washington County Sheriff's Office

The son of Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson is facing felony drug charges after being arrested in Baldwin County, Alabama.

Asa William Hutchinson III, 40, was searched Saturday night as he attempted to enter the Hangout Music Festival in Gulf Shores. Police said Hutchinson was attempting to conceal something in his rear waistband, so they confronted him and asked if he had any contraband.

KATV, Channel 7 News

Authorities are investigating after a man was found shot to death in a parking lot along a busy street in North Little Rock.

Police say the shooting was reported early Monday in a Wal-Mart parking lot on McCain Boulevard.

Police Sgt. Brian Dedrick says officers arrived and found one man dead at the scene.

Dedrick says detectives are interviewing witnesses, including a man believed to be involved in the shooting. No arrests have been made. The victim's name has not been released.

John Williams death row attorney lethal injection
courts.arkansas.gov/courts/supreme-court

Executions may be a step closer to resuming in Arkansas if the state’s Supreme Court rules in favor of Arkansas’s lethal injection drug-supplier secrecy laws.

John Williams, an attorney for eight inmates on death row argued before the high court Thursday that state secrecy about drug suppliers violates their constitutional protection against cruel and unusual punishment.

A fourth alleged victim will join a civil lawsuit filed against a former Arkansas judge who resigned this week amid an investigation into allegations he engaged in inappropriate sexual relationships with defendants in his court.

Three men have filed a lawsuit against an Arkansas judge, alleging they were the victims of sexual misconduct or abuse while they were defendants in his court.

Part-time Cross County District Judge Joe Boeckmann resigned Monday amid an investigation by the Arkansas Judicial Discipline and Disability Commission into allegations he had inappropriate sexual relationships with male defendants dating back to his time as a prosecutor.

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