State ban idled, awaits trial
A federal judge on Friday prohibited the state of Arkansas from enforcing a new law that outlaws most abortions at or after 12 weeks of pregnancy.
Eyes across the nation are focused on Arkansas as abortion-rights proponents and attorneys for the state prepare to face off in the first hearing on a lawsuit challenging a state law that bans most abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy.
A federal judge Wednesday rejected the state’s requests that she dismiss both a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of a new Arkansas abortion law and a motion for an injunction preventing the law from automatically going into effect on Aug. 16.
Judge:Time frame too short
A hearing next week in which two Little Rock abortion doctors will seek to halt the implementation of a new state law that bans most abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy if a fetal heartbeat is detected, will proceed without the intervention of a Wynne-based counseling group, a federal judge decided late Friday afternoon.
Ruling by U.S. Supreme Court on similar case awaited
A heroin-trafficking trial focusing on two fatal overdoses among young adults in central Arkansas has been postponed until Sept. 2, 2014, because of a pending U.S. Supreme Court case.
A Wynne-based organization that provides counseling and other services to pregnant women asked Wednesday to intervene in a federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of a new state law prohibiting most abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy if a fetal heartbeat is detected.
Randeep Mann, a former Russellville doctor who was convicted of orchestrating a nearly fatal grenade attack in 2009, must turn over half of his past and future disability-insurance benefits to be applied to the $1.2 million he owes in restitution, Chief U.S. District Judge Brian Miller declared Wednesday.
Photos of girl, 12, wrong, he admits
A Pulaski County man who admitted creating sexually explicit photographs and videotapes of a 12-year-old girl, whom he is also accused of sexually abusing, was sentenced Tuesday to 17 years in prison on a federal charge of receiving child pornography.
Marital property applies only to divorce, prosecutor says
The battle over whether a judge should order all of Dr. Randeep Mann’s disability benefits applied to the restitution he owes for a near-fatal grenade attack continued Monday with another filing by federal prosecutors.
Unsafe products sold, firm alleges
A national manufacturer of personal hygiene products has accused a recycling company of reneging on a contract to destroy defective products made at the company’s Conway mill, resulting in more than 1 million defective tampons being diverted for resale on the “gray market,” including the Internet.
At a resentencing hearing Wednesday ordered by a federal appeals court, former Russellville doctor Randeep Mann received the same life sentence he received more than two years ago for orchestrating a 2009 grenade explosion that severely injured Dr. Trent Pierce of West Memphis, then the chairman of the Arkansas State Medical Board.
Nothing cruel about wait for jaw surgery, jury decides
A federal inmate who broke his jaw and suffered numerous other injuries during a 2007 assault in a Texas prison asked a federal jury Tuesday in Little Rock to find that he suffered an unconstitutional delay in treatment after being moved to the federal prison in Forrest City.
Like the former chief executive officer of the Little Rock Diagnostic Clinic, where she used to work, retired nurse Catherine Minor was sentenced Tuesday in federal court to three years’ probation and ordered to pay a $1,000 fine.
Lawyer: Victim, ex-spouse split it
Arkansas law concerning the division of marital property — or all property acquired by either spouse subsequent to the marriage — is well-established and prevents the federal government from taking all of Randeep Mann’s benefits from a disability-insurance policy to apply to his restitution in a criminal case, his wife’s attorney argued Monday.
Although there is no dispute that defense attorneys engaged in racial discrimination when selecting a mostly black jury to hear a federal murder case against two white supremacists in 1999, neither defendant has shown he was prejudiced as a result, a federal appeals court said Monday in upholding the conviction and death sentence of Danny Lee of Yukon, Okla. In rejecting Lee’s latest petition for a new trial, a threejudge panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis used similar reasoning as that used by another three-judge panel last week in rejecting co-defendant Chevy Kehoe’s similar petition.
To go on, new lawyer vital
A federal lawsuit accusing Arkansas’ Family Council Action Committee of defaming the distributors of medical-marijuana dispensaries by referring to the machines as common “vending machines” is on the verge of being tossed out of court.
Two groups want judge to block fetal-heartbeat limit from going into effect
A federal judge will hear arguments beginning at 10 a.m. May 17 on whether to prevent the enactment of a new Arkansas law prohibiting abortions after 12 weeks of pregnancy if a fetal heartbeat is detected.
Picking black jurors an error, supremacist who killed 3 for cash, guns says
Chevie Kehoe’s latest appeal of his 1999 federal convictions for murdering a Pope County family as part of a conspiracy to establish a whites-only nation was rejected Monday by a three-judge panel of the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis.
In sheriff race, he mailed birth hoax
A former Faulkner County sheriff ’s deputy admitted Friday that he created a phony birth certificate last spring to make it appear that a rival candidate for sheriff had fathered an illegitimate, mixed-race child in Texas, then mailed copies of the fake document from Texas to a few voters.
One of two men who were expected to plead guilty Thursday in a federal methamphetamine case was found dead of a gunshot wound in his Pocahontas apartment Monday, authorities said Thursday.
Ex-Rep. Hallum, 3 others admit crime
May and June sentencing dates were set Wednesday for former state Rep. Hudson Hallum and three others who admitted in September that they used cash, chicken dinners and cheap vodka to bribe absentee voters in three special elections in 2011.
Losing candidate looked to recoup from election rigger
The 2011 Democratic primary opponent of former state Rep. Hudson Hallum of Marion, who resigned in September after admitting he bribed absentee voters to retain the District 54 seat, on Monday withdrew her request that Hallum and his co-conspirators should pay her restitution of $39,830.
ACLU’s Sklar foresees ‘slam-dunk’
The American Civil Liberties Union and the Center for Reproductive Rights on Tuesday filed a federal lawsuit in Little Rock challenging the constitutionality of a new law in Arkansas that bans abortions after 12 weeks of gestation if a heartbeat is detected and asking a federal judge to prevent its implementation in July.
A federal judge on Thursday rejected Little Rock’s request that he throw out a wrongful-death lawsuit filed in 2012 over a 2008 police shooting on the grounds that the statute of limitations had expired before the suit was filed.
The former president and principal shareholder of Landmark Closing Co., which operated out of Searcy between 2006 and mid-2009, admitted Friday to a federal judge that she had siphoned more than $400,000 from a title-insurance company during those years to enjoy a lavish lifestyle.
Drug-escort case draws 30 months
The only law-enforcement officer to go to trial in a federal drug and public-corruption case centered in Helena-West Helena was sentenced Thursday to 2½ years in prison for her extortion and drug-trafficking convictions.
A federal grand jury has indicted longtime Little Rock veterinarian Thomas Michael Gillum and his wife, Ronda Gillum, on charges of conspiring to defraud the government by impeding the assessment and payment of income taxes.
A group of black community leaders held a news conference Wednesday to discuss the “dismal record” of black lawyers being appointed to serve as federal judges in Arkansas and to encourage Sen. Mark Pryor, D-Ark., to add the name of one prominent black lawyer to a list of judicial recommendations he submitted to the Obama administration in March.
Three women, including the wife of former Pocahontas Police Chief Chad Milligan, pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court in Little Rock to methamphetamine charges.
Attorneys for the federal government filed a motion Tuesday asking that Dr. Randeep Mann, who is in prison for orchestrating a grenade explosion in early 2009, be ordered to fork over $413,259 in disability-insurance benefits he has accrued in the past two years.
At the urging of a Little Rock attorney, a federal judge on Friday ordered the state Department of Correction “to maintain, and not to destroy,” three books that are the subject of a lawsuit filed on behalf of an inmate.
Despite draining his life savings to fight a federal tax-evasion charge only to end up convicted, imprisoned and disbarred, former Little Rock tax lawyer Barry Jewell says he is a happy man.
The 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis has denied Dr. Randeep Mann’s request that the full court reconsider his appeal of his 2010 convictions related to a grenade attack.
Former Little Rock police officer Josh Hastings, who is facing a manslaughter charge in connection with an Aug. 12 shooting that left a 15-year-old boy dead, is one of four law enforcement officers from three departments named in a federal lawsuit alleging excessive force.
Tennessee office has change of heart
A change of heart by the U.S. Probation Office for the Middle District of Tennessee has spared Operation Delta Blues defendant Donnie Mitchell from a resentencing hearing that was scheduled for this morning in Little Rock.
Filing alleges the business broke their deal for endorsements
Local celebrity P. Allen Smith, a professional gardener who is known across the country for his television shows and books, sued a seed company and its affiliates Tuesday, alleging they broke a contract to pay him for endorsing their products.
The Disability Rights Center of Arkansas filed a federal lawsuit Friday against Baptist Health in an effort to compel the health-care institution to release records pertaining to three “restraint related” deaths of patients in October.
Tennessee out, so resentencing is set
A Helena-West Helena man, sentenced Wednesday to “time served” instead of a prison sentence after a federal judge learned that he was relieved to be arrested and freed from his life of drug trafficking, will be resentenced next week.
Evidence lacking in federal racial-bias case, judge concludes
Former Pulaski County Coroner Garland Camper’s federal lawsuit against the county alleging that he was forced to resign on April 11, 2011, because he is black was thrown out of court Thursday, exactly one year after it was filed.
1 more to prison in Delta Blues
A Marvell woman who served as an unpaid courier for a drug-trafficking operation that imported cocaine from Dallas into the Helena-West Helena area in 2008 and 2009 was sentenced Thursday to two years in prison – half the term sought by prosecutors but more than the probation she requested.
Judge gives drug dealer home confinement
A man known as “the mechanic” in a Helena-West Helena auto shop that served as a front for a massive drugtrafficking operation was given a break Wednesday after a judge learned he was relieved to be arrested and have the chance to escape a life of “constant chaos.” Federal sentencing guidelines recommended a two- to 2/2-year prison sentence for Donnie Mitchell, 50, who on Sept. 14 admitted being part of the drug ring that channeled hundreds of pounds of cocaine and marijuana into the Arkansas Delta region in 2010 and 2011.
Injured by device he made; he once gave pipe-bomb as gift, records show
A Little Rock man who can’t seem to stop making bombs pleaded guilty Monday to a federal charge accusing him of making one in his backyard in 2010 that exploded between his legs and left him a partial amputee.
Two central Arkansas men pleaded guilty to a federal charge of wire-fraud conspiracy, admitting they diverted customer funds to their own PayPal accounts while working at Rogers Photo Archive in North Little Rock, U.S. Attorney Christopher Thyer announced Friday.
A three-judge panel’s dismissal last year of a lawsuit challenging the way state Senate District 24 boundaries were redrawn in 2011 will stand.
A heroin-trafficking trial focusing on nine overdoses, two of them fatal, among young adults and teenagers in central Arkansas will be held in a federal courtroom in Little Rock, U.S. District Judge D. Price Marshall has declared.
The former chief financial officer for Thermo Energy Corp., which announced in September 2011 that it was moving its headquarters from Little Rock to Worcester, Mass., has been indicted on charges of stealing $109,575.80 from the company from August 2006 until April 2009.
Inclined to let suit proceed, judge says
A judge signaled Tuesday that two farming families will be able to present claims to a federal jury against an insurance company they contend cost them half a million dollars by promising to insure their risky corn-planting ventures in Desha and Miller counties in 2007, then reneging after the crop failed.
A federal grand jury has indicted former Sherwood pharmacist Michael Brockinton on two counts each of adulterating and misbranding drugs in connection with his work at the Jacksonville Wal-Mart until he was arrested last June.
Theodis Dixson Jr., who was the registered agent for Total Restoration Corp., an investment firm, and the sole signatory on its account at Simmons First National Bank in Pine Bluff, has been indicted on a federal wire fraud charge.
Little Rock real estate developer Roger Stephen Clary pleaded guilty Thursday to a federal mail-fraud charge, admitting he misused part of a $4.5 million loan he obtained in 2008 from Banc of America Leasing and Capital LLC.