Johnathan Reaves

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Arkansas Governor Mike Beebe has named a replacement after a judge was removed from the bench last week by the Arkansas Supreme Court.  Governor Beebe's office has announced that Michael Murphy of Conway has been appointed as Circuit Judge in the 2nd Division Court of the 20th Judicial District.

The Craighead County Sheriff’s Department says smartphone users can find out who is in the detention center, as well as those who have been released.  Craighead County Sheriff Marty Boyd says a free mobile app is now available that will allow for more transparency into the detention center.  According to the Sun, the app is an extension of the Relativity Police Systems, which is a jail management software company.  The app will allow people to see who has been placed in the facility, which people have been released, as well as photos, charges, court dates, and bond.  The app has be

The Jonesboro City Council is expected to decide whether to allow a rezoning proposal to pass concerning a 201-acre site located at Hilltop.  Tomorrow night is the third reading on an ordinance that council members must consider about Greensborough Village.  If approved by the Jonesboro City Council, the ordinance would allow for a mixed use of commercial and residential properties, with over half of the residences being single family detached and attached residential.   The plan for the new area reportedly includes 200 single-family lots on the north and south sides of Greensboro road, as

Jonesboro is receiving a $1.2 million grant to help build a railroad overpass at Highland Drive.  An Associated Press report states that Arkansas Senators Mark Pryor and John Boozman have made the announcement.  The funds will be used to conduct reviews and create design plans for the overpass.  The funds come from the U-S Department of Transportation's TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) program.  The program provides funds to projects and areas that are expected to have a large economic impact. 

One of the millage issues that are on the school election ballot Tuesday involves the Trumann School District.  Officials with the district say a new elementary school is needed to replace to aging Cedar Park Elementary School.  According to the Sun Newspaper, the current school is over 50 years old and has numerous issues, including plumbing, electrical, space and wheelchair accessibility issues.  The district will ask for a 2.8 mill increase Tuesday to help fund construction of a new elementary school for kindergarten through fourth grade.  The project is expected to cost 11-mill

After receiving a complaint, Arkansas State University has announced it is modifying its helmet decals.  The decals were worn by the team to honor former player Markel Owens and former equipment manager Barry Weyer.  The decals were in the shape of a cross, with Owens' initials on one side and Weyer's initials on the other side.

Fowler Foods and A-State College of Nursing and Health Professions present "An Evening with Bob Hope" benefiting the A-State Beck PRIDE Center for America's Wounded Veterans. This features Bill Johnson, a Bob Hope Impersonator. Johnson has performed as Bob for the USO, as well as military groups, conventions, festivals, and corporations. The night also features Two on Tap. Melissa Giattino and Ron DeStefano perform a variety show that feature dancing and music of the golden age of the silver screen.

Fowler Foods and A-State College of Nursing and Health Professions present "An Evening with Bob Hope" benefiting the A-State Beck PRIDE Center for America's Wounded Veterans. This features Bill Johnson, a Bob Hope Impersonator. Johnson has performed as Bob for the USO, as well as military groups, conventions, festivals, and corporations. The night also features Two on Tap. Melissa Giattino and Ron DeStefano perform a variety show that feature dancing and music of the golden age of the silver screen.

Add Jackson County to the list of those counties in the state that want a new maximum security state prison.  KAIT television reports the Jackson County Quorum Court is expected to approve a resolution tomorrow night that will support building a new state prison in Jackson County.  Jackson County houses two state prisons: Grimes and McPherson are both located just miles northeast of Newport.  Director of Economic Development in Newport Jon Chadwell says the new $100 million, 1,000 bed maximum security prison would provide a stable income for those in the community.

Two overpasses in Jonesboro have been given the green light to move forward.  During a meeting of the Jonesboro Area Metropolitan Planning Organization yesterday, Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin excitedly announced the city has been awarded a $1.2 million federal grant.  According to the Jonesboro Sun, the money will be used to finance environmental review and design plans for a railroad overpass on Highland Drive.  The city will have to pick up $300,000 of the cost of the $1.5 million study.  The city applied for the grant in April and learned yesterday they had been approved for th

The Matilda and Karl Pfeiffer Museum and Study Center in Piggott present the 11th annual “Native American Day” Saturday afternoon.  The event will be held on the grounds of the Museum and will focus on the lives and history of Native Americans who lived in northeast Arkansas.  Museum Director Teresa Taylor tells how the idea for this annual event got its start. 

The Dean B. Ellis Library presents an exhibit and subsequent events that are taking place on the A-State campus.  Here is an event that will take place today at the Fine Arts Auditorium on the Jonesboro campus.

The Arkansas Department of Health reports the number of young people smoking in the state is rising.  The reason is the electronic cigarette.  State health officials report that almost one-quarter of high school students in Arkansas never smoked a regular cigarette, but did admit to "vaping", or using an e-cigarette.  More information is available in this press release from the Arkansas Department of Health:

In 2013, 263,000 youth who had never smoked a cigarette used an electronic cigarette (e-cigarette) according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Governor Mike Beebe today announced the following appointments to State boards and commissions:

Dr. Sameh Abul-Ezz, Little Rock, to the State Kidney Disease Commission. Appointment expires January 14, 2015. Replaces Dr. Tim Langford.

Richard Benson, Forrest City, to the Mississippi River Parkway Commission. Appointment expires June 8, 2016. Replaces Weston Lewey.

Stephanie Bland, Alexander, reappointed to the Arkansas State Board of Acupuncture and Related Techniques. Appointment expires July 31, 2017.

Another way for students to get to and from Arkansas State University will be considered tomorrow.  The Jonesboro Metropolitan Planning Organization will consider a proposal for a pedestrian overpass to be built over the railroad tracks between South Caraway Road and the Arkansas State University Campus.  The Sun Newspaper reports the plan has the support of the Jonesboro Economical Transit System, because it would allow students who do not have cars easier access to center’s transfer station that will be built on Matthews Avenue.  If the proposal is approved tomorrow morning, the proposal

The city of Jonesboro has a new police chief.  Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin appointed Lt. Rick Elliot to the position during a reception yesterday in the Municipal Courtroom.  Elliot began his career as a reserve officer in Jonesboro in 1979.  Two years later, he was hired as a full-time officer with the Blytheville Police Department.  He came back to Jonesboro in 1992 and worked his way to become a lieutenant.  Perrin discussed what stood out about Elliot.

It wasn’t unexpected news.  Citizens at a public meeting last night in Walnut Ridge were told the Lawrence County jail has about six more months it can remain open.  What is facing those citizens will be a looming sales tax issue aimed at building a new county jail.  County Judge Dale Freeman says the only other alternative is shipping the current inmates to other counties, which he says would “bankrupt” the county.  The Sun Newspaper reports that Arkansas Jail Standards Coordinator Danny Hickman appeared at the meeting last night and told the 75 in attendance the current jail is a “ticking

Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin is slated to announce the city’s new police chief today.  The Sun Newspaper reports the announcement will take place during a press conference at one this afternoon in the police department’s training room.  Perrin told audience members attending Tuesday night’s Jonesboro City Council meeting that he believed he could make the decision quickly.  The new chief reportedly already works for the city of Jonesboro.  Perrin says he had considered candidates from Forrest City, Conway and the Arkansas State Police before he says he decided the best candidate was alread

Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin says he could make an announcement this week on which person will lead Jonesboro Police Department in the future.  The Sun Newspaper reports Perrin told the audience at last night’s City Council meeting the next chief may already be working for the city.  He says there are qualified candidates within the department, and he tells the Sun he spent much of the Labor Day weekend reviewing the qualifications of the captains and lieutenants on the force to see who would be the best qualified for the position.  Perrin says he will make a decision soon.  Forme

Authorities are investigating a murder-suicide in Jonesboro.  The incident happened yesterday morning when 17-year-old Diamond Ebron was gunned down in the driveway of her home in the 3100 block of Ashwood Drive.  Police say the shooting happened just after ten yesterday morning.  The suspect in the shooting, 26-year-old Kenneth Thomas of Jonesboro, reportedly fled the scene and was pulled over about ten minutes later on Arkansas Highway 226.  The Sun Newspaper reports when officers ordered Thomas out of his vehicle, they heard a single gunshot and reportedly found Thomas dead from a gunsho

A gynecologist accused of taking photographs of his patients is facing three more charges of video voyeurism.  68 year old Dr.

Video visitation services for inmates at the new Greene County jail in Paragould are expected to start this week.  Greene County Jail administrator Dave Tierney tells the Associated Press inmates and visitors should be able to talk to each other via video starting September 3.  He says the process will eliminate face-to-face visits.  The new video calls will be available through appointments and will be recorded.  The services are a key feature of the new 75,000 square-foot jail, which opened last month.  Nearly 500 inmates can be housed at the new facility.  The new jail is possible due to

Groundbreaking ceremonies for Big River Steel take place September 22.  The Blytheville Courier News says the event is invitation-only, and is expected to host numerous dignitaries, including Arkansas Governor Mike Beebe.  Construction on the $1.3 billion project is expected to take at least two years.  Once built, at least 500 workers will be employed, averaging salaries of $75,000.  The project is moving forward, despite attempts to stop it from Nucor Steel in Blytheville.  Nucor has filed a lawsuit in federal court, claiming the company is violating the Clean Air Act.  The project is bei

The Missouri Department of Agriculture is offering grants to get more locally produced food into the state’s schools.  Applications are being accepted to those who produce food themselves, or make foods that come from small farmers.  Agriculture Director Richard Fordyce tells the Associated Press the goal is to increase the amount of Missouri-made food that is served to students at breakfast and lunch.  Application deadline is October 31 and grant amounts are up to $200,000.  More information is available here.

The Jonesboro Economical Transit System is adding a new route today.  Director Steve Ewart says Route 57 will serve Northeast Jonesboro.  The bus will make stops about every 30 minutes and will connect the neighborhoods and institutions in the vicinity of East Aggie Road and Airport Road, the new NEA Baptist Hospital, and the area around Pleasant Grove Road with  Arkansas State University and the rest of Jonesboro.  Ewart says the route has been planned for more than two years and will be available from 5:43 am to 6:09 pm.  More information here: