Fears surfaced on social media last week when remarks were posted suspecting another escape from the Lonoke County Detention Center. However, the observations were apparently an unfortunate misunderstanding of an incident in the Fairview area, Lonoke County Sheriff John Staley said, replying to an inquiry about the posts. The accounts said there was an apparent manhunt under way in the Arkansas Highway 236 area.
“We went out that way to make an arrest, and the person we were looking for ran out a back door,” requiring a chase, Staley said. However, the chase was brief, he remarked.
It is the same area in which Michael Edwards of Ward was found after evading searchers for two days following his June 29 break from the temporary cell at the Lonoke Detention Facility. The findings of an internal review of the escape have not yet been released; the jailers involved, who were put on administrative leave, resigned shortly after the review began.
According to a sheriff’s report, at about 5 p.m. July 10, Staley and Capt. Kevin McCoy went to a Fairview Road residence looking for Chon Armstrong, 30, on an arrest warrant from the Arkansas Board of Parole. The report stated that Armstrong fled from a side door and ran towards a corn field.
Sheriff’s deputies, assisted by Arkansas State Police troopers, sealed the area; search dog teams from the Arkansas Department of Corrections, Tucker Unit, also responded to aid the search. Armstrong was found and taken into custody within a short time.
Armstrong was arrested for fleeing, resisting arrest and the outstanding warrant.
Further investigation at the scene resulted in the arrest of Shauna Fiting, 26; Jillian Price, 23; and Martha Randleas, 36 on suspicion of hindering apprehension. Price was also arrested for possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine) that was found when she was arrested.
In other actions, Krystal Lea Beam, 35, of Ward, was arrested Wednesday, July 10, in connection with the theft of scrap metal.
At about 4 p.m., July 10, a report was made to the sheriff’s office about someone taking scrap metal from a business on Cook Street outside the Ward city limits. Lt. Jim Kulesa and Deputy Tony Wilson responded to the report.
The report provided a description of a vehicle; police officers at Beebe found the vehicle at a scrap metal business on Arkansas Highway 367 in Beebe.
Further investigation led to the arrest of Beam on suspicion of criminal trespass and Theft of property.
The scrap metal, with an estimated value of $12, was returned to the owner.
Sheriff’s report also note the recovery of two all-terrain vehicles.
At about 5 p.m., July 10, Lt. Jim Kulesa was given information about two ATVs that had been reported stolen.
The ATVs, a 2002 Kawasaki and 2011 Honda Rancher, were found at a residence on Danie Glover Road, Lonoke. The ATVs were taken from separate locations near Carlisle during September 2012. The Kawasaki was returned to the owner and the Honda Rancher will be released to the insurance company. Further investigation is under way.