January 12th, 2012
When a Benton man, then in his late 20s, met with First Baptist Church officials in January of 2009 to levy accusations of sexual abuse against the congregation's minister of music — who was present and did not deny the charges — the victim expected the church to prohibit the offender from future contact with members of the youth choir he directed.
"Law enforcement is in my blood and I love my job. I feel like we have made a difference." These are the reasons Saline County Sheriff Bruce Pennington gave Monday for seeking re-election to a third term. "I have 40 years' experience and you have to have that kind of experience to get the job done right," Pennington said. "It's the only way you can."
Saline Courier crime reporter Matt Burks puts together the top crime stories of the week.
Neighbors guilty of child sex crimes
Colleagues of Dr. Paul Hogue Jr. and others were remembering the Benton man today as "a great doctor who never turned anybody away."
Hogue died Monday at Saline Memorial Hospital Hospice House. He was 88.
Dr. Joe Martindale, who practiced with Hogue for several years, called him "one of the old-school country doctors who always took care of people."
"He was a close friend of mine," Martindale said.
During a press conference Monday, Bryant Mayor Jill Dabbs accused Alderman Adrian Henley of illegally accessing the employee files of Police Chief Mark Kizer, past police chief Tony Cauffman and Dabbs' daughter. Henley, however, said he did nothing illegal.
The incident in question occurred in January 2011 between the time Human Resources Director Shayne King was terminated by Dabbs and the hiring of Robin Ussery as King's replacement.
When asked how she learned of the alleged incident, Dabbs responded, "I found him in there. In the (human resources) office."
Officers with the Benton Special Investigation Unit, which is comprised of officers from the Benton and Bryant Police Departments, recently conducted undercover compliance checks of restaurants that serve alcohol in Benton and Bryant. These checks were done to ensure that these establishments are not serving alcohol to minors.
"It is a trend that law enforcement officials, as well as citizens, hope will continue â€” the decrease of DWI arrests during the Christmas and New Year's Eve celebrations," Benton Lt. Kevin Russell said.
Harmony Grove continued their quest to another conference title on Tuesday when they played host to Cutter Morning Star. Unfortunately, only one team was to show up against the Eagles.
The Lady Cardinals started the night for Harmony Grove and on a very high note, especially for their confidence, beating the Lady Eagles 45-32 to get to 2-4 in conference play.
The Lady Cardinals opened the first quarter with a 16-4 run heading into the second, thanks big in part to their senior leadership who had 10 of the first quarter points for the Lady Cardinals.
The future of Longhills Golf Course and Country Club appears to be just as uncertain after a lengthy and occasionally emotional City Council meeting Monday night as it was before the session began.
In that meeting, proponents and opponents shared their views of a proposal to rezone the area to allow construction of an apartment complex that would preserve the existing course and its related amenities.
I want to thank the Saline Courier for inviting me to write for them. I look forward to many discussions with you all about my opinions on various topics. Just a little about myself for those of you who donâ€™t know me - Iâ€™m a small business owner, the husband of a school teacher, and a father of two great kids. As I complete my first year in elected office as your 15th Lieutenant Governor, I could not be more proud to be an Arkansan.
This week Iâ€™d like to explain why I chose to endorse Governor Mitt Romney for President.