Burglar makes off with safe hidden in Budweiser carton

June 15, 2009 Independence County deputies were kept busy with thefts and burglaries Wednesday, according to reports, but no arrests were made at that time.Deputy Fred Friar reported that he was dispatched that evening to North State Street on a residential burglary call. When he arrived, he was told by Tommy Winningham that between 8:15 a.m. and 7 p.m. Tuesday, someone entered his residence through the rear door, then removed a lockbox containing $2,000 in cash, 30 silver dollar coins and important paperwork.

College Briefs

June 15, 2009 Local student chosen to go on pilgrimage

Izard County reports arrests

June 15, 2009 MELBOURNE — A Brockwell man who tested positive for drugs was taken to the Izard County jail Saturday night after allegedly making a threatening call, Sheriff Tate Lawrence said. Eric Burke Lafleur, 44, was arrested following a call to a residence in the Bandmill community. He was charged with first-degree terroristic threatening and disorderly conduct.“Lafleur tested positive for cocaine, opiates and marijuana,” Lawrence said. Lafleur remains in jail. In other arrests:

Deadline approaching for watermelon pageant

June 15, 2009 CAVE CITY — The Cave City Watermelon Pageant will be June 26-27 in the new Cave City High School Cafeteria, pageant director Carolyn Wammack said.June 22 is the entry deadline.Contests the first night beginning at 7 o’clock will include Little Miss Melon, for ages 4-5; Little Mr. Melon, ages 4-6; Petite Miss Melon, ages 6-7; Young Miss Melon, ages 8-9; Pre-Teen Miss Melon, ages 10-12; Junior Miss Melon, ages 13-15; and Queen Melon, ages 16-21.

Area Briefs

June 15, 2009 Weather Service reports tornado

Children of river rats discuss net making, fishing

June 15, 2009 Dallas Hughes could tell if the fish were biting by the level of the water in the river. He had his favorite bait recipes and could gig fish all night. Over the course of several decades, he made nets for himself and other fishermen and even carved his own tools.Today, some of those tools are on display at the Old Independence Regional Museum. On Sunday, Jimmy Hughes and Diane Tebbetts, both children of would-be “river rats,” gave a talk entitled “Catching by Net,” in which they discussed how the nets were crafted and used.

Area warned of sex offender

June 15, 2009 MELBOURNE — A registered sex offender who was recently released from prison is now living at HC 82 Box 15 (Shadow Gate Road) in Violet Hill, according to Izard County Sheriff Tate Lawrence.Palmer Lee Ward was convicted in 1999 for first-degree sexual abuse involving an 11-year-old girl. In addition to the sexual abuse charge, Lawrence said Ward has violent criminal offenses involving the use of a deadly weapon. Lawrence said a sex offender notification has been hand delivered to residences within a half-mile radius of Ward’s residence.

Batesville has state’s first court

June 15, 2009 The state’s first DWI court is up and running in Batesville.Last week, the Independence County Quorum Court heard from District Judge Chaney Taylor about the implementation of Arkansas’ first DWI Court, which began June 1. A DWI Court Team, consisting of a prosecutor, defense attorney, coordinator, law enforcement, screener/evaluator, probation/community supervision and treatment professionals, was assembled in 2008 and attended training in Newport Beach, Calif., last March.

Storm destroys emergency radio tower

June 15, 2009 All emergency communications in the western portion of Independence County were knocked out when a storm destroyed a radio tower on Brock Mountain early Saturday morning.Office of Emergency Management 911 coordinator Will Floyd said this morning that apparently a year of hard weather had taken its toll on the tower, which was completely destroyed.