Body found near warehouse

June 15, 2011 BLYTHEVILLE (AP) — Blytheville police are investigating the apparent homicide of a Kentucky man who was found inside a car near a warehouse.Police Capt. Scott Adams said Tuesday officers received a call about a vehicle in a ditch near the parking lot of the Industrial Park on Friday. Adams said when officers arrived about 3 p.m. they found a man slumped over the steering wheel of the car with injuries consistent with a homicide.The man later was identified as Dexter Burgess. His body will be taken to the Arkansas State Medical Examiner’s Office for an autopsy.

Ex-Californian arrested for fraud

June 15, 2011 SEARCY (AP) — A Searcy woman faces three federal fraud charges stemming from a job she held with a now-defunct company in Orange County, Calif., where she once lived.Julia James England, 45, is charged with three counts of mail fraud in an indictment returned last week by a federal grand jury in Orange County. Investigators say she stole nearly $400,000 from the Callan Western Sales. England worked part-time from 2000 to 2007 for the company, which sold sporting goods.

Storm damage to Beebe schools tops more than $400,000

June 15, 2011 BEEBE (AP) — A school official in Beebe says the damage estimate from an April tornado to the district’s schools is more than $400,000 and rising.Assistant Superintendent Hal Crisco told the school board Tuesday that the damage estimate is nearly $412,000 and likely will increase because it doesn’t include damage to books or technology.He said the largest cost will be just more than $265,000 to repair the roof of Beebe Elementary School.Crisco said he hopes the damage will be repaired in time for the start of school this fall.

Battlefield museum to reopen

June 15, 2011 PRAIRIE GROVE (AP) — Park officials say a Civil War museum in northwest Arkansas will reopen this weekend.The Department of Parks and Tourism says Hindman Hall in Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park will reopen on Saturday. It closed last fall so workers could install new exhibits and do renovations.Hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants from the Arkansas Natural and Cultural Resources Council covered the costs.Confederate and Union soldiers clashed in Prairie Grove on December 7, 1862, resulting in 2,700 casualties.

New Wynne mayor elected

June 15, 2011 WYNNE (AP) — A city councilman won a four-person race in a special election to become mayor of Wynne.Unofficial returns show Councilman Bob Stacy received nearly 69 percent of the vote in Tuesday’s election to defeat Philip Bankston, James Carney and Christi Lindley Foltz.Stacy will replace Mayor Paul Nichols. Nichols is retiring July 15 after 12 years in office and with 3½ years remaining on his term.

Vehicle-use lawsuit dismissed

June 15, 2011 LITTLE ROCK (AP) — A judge on Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit seeking reimbursement from Arkansas employees and officials for any personal use of state-owned vehicles, saying there was no evidence the defendants used the cars for personal trips without repaying the state.

Former Newport man to die for triple murder Execution set for tonight

June 15, 2011 HUNTSVILLE, Texas — An ex-con suspected in a triple homicide in the Texas Panhandle spent six months on the lam before a broken taillight gave him away.John Balentine gave the officer who pulled him over a false name, but it showed up as an alias he often used. He was arrested in Houston — 600 miles from a tiny house in Amarillo where the killings took place — and later confessed. Prosecutors said the slayings were the result of a feud between Balentine and his ex-girlfriend’s brother.

Newport Walnut Grove Cemetery Association to meet

June 15, 2011 NEWPORT — The annual meeting of the Newport Walnut Grove Cemetery Association will be at 10 a.m. July 1 in the Merchants & Planters Bank Community Room, located on Highway 367 North in Newport.All donations for upkeep are welcome. According to the cemetery association board of directors, it takes a minimum of $30,000 a year, or $2,500 per month, above the interest income and sale of grave spaces to keep the cemetery in good condition. This year an $8,000 certificate of deposit had to be cashed in order to keep up with the expense of maintaining the cemetery.

BHS ’61 sets reunion

June 15, 2011 The Batesville High School class of 1961 will hold its 50th reunion June 24 and 25. Activities include a meet and greet dinner beginning at 5 p.m. on June 24 at the Batesville Country Club. Entertainment by the Jokers band, a performance open to the public, will begin at 7:30. Tickets are $15 per person or $25 per couple.A reception will be held from 11 a.m.-3p.m. June 25 at Elizabeth’s Restaurant and at 6 p.m. at Josie’s at the Lockhouse.

Church planning concert

June 15, 2011 SOUTHSIDE — New Direction will be in concert at 6 p.m. Saturday at Mount Zion Baptist Church in Southside.The group includes Jerry Sartain, Jeff Baggett, Jill Eads, Sherlon Martin, Carol Dixon, Kendal Roberson and Judy Roberson.