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Barbara Dolores Birge Billingsley

Mrs. Barbara Dolores Birge Billingsley, age 87, a resident of Mena, Arkansas, died Thursday, August 20, 2020, at her home. She was born June 22, 1933, in De Queen, Arkansas. She was a homemaker and a member of the Mena Congregation of Jehovah’s Witnesses.  Mrs. Billingsley loved to cook and garden. Mrs. Billingsley was preceded in death by her parents, ...

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August 19, 2020

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Manslaughter charge hangs jury in church

Midnight deliberation returns mistrial By Jeri Borst Court was held in church last week, making for an a-typical trial case environment for the murder charges against John Mitchell, 60, of Hatfield. Jurors, who wore masks during the trial, deliberated until midnight Thursday, and returned not guilty murder verdicts. However, the manslaughter charge hung the jury, with eight wanting to convict ...

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Flash Flood

Photo by Jeri Borst Six Mile Creek spills out onto Polk Road 34, right, and Henry Lane, underwater left,  last week during a flash flood when several water rescues were performed throughout the county by first responders. Heavy rainfall caused major damage to county roads, bridges and drainage structures, Polk County Judge Brandon Ellison said. As much as 13 inches ...

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Plans stall for sunshine house to serve as museum

Submitted by Polk County Genealogical Society -Shirley Manning, President The Polk County Genealogical Society proposed to purchase the old Sunshine House Day Care building and move it to the back of the Polk County Library for the purpose of establishing a museum. Work has been underway for some time to gather information and to work with those involved with moving ...

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Rodeo Royalty winners announced

Photo Courtesy of Phyllis Caldwell -PCFRA The Polk County Fair and Rodeo Association announced the winners of the Rodeo Royalty contest during the rodeo Saturday night. 2020 Rodeo Royalty winners are: Polk County Rodeo Queen – Abygail Fortner; Polk County Rodeo Senior Queen – Victoria Barrett; Polk County Rodeo Princess – Ava Ruth Fields; Polk County Rodeo Little Miss – ...

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From the Governor’s Office

Leveling the Broadband Playing Field COVID-19 has highlighted some of the shortcomings of our broadband connectivity, but the pandemic also has created opportunities for us to accelerate our expansion of internet service, which I’d like to talk about today. Earlier this year, I created a steering committee to study our needs and recommend the best use of federal money that ...

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Around the State

4 arrested in fatal shooting MAGNOLIA— Four suspects have been arrested in the fatal shooting of a Southern Arkansas University student in a parking lot on the campus, according to the university’s president. Quincy Lewis, 19, Shaivonn Robinson, 19, Le’Kamerin Tolbert, 20 and Odies Wilson, 21, were arrested Friday on capital murder warrants in the Tuesday shooting death of Joshua ...

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School environment evolves due to pandemic

By Jeri Borst When schools closed in March due to concerns of a COVID-19 pandemic, much was out of the control of local school districts. Mandated by the state to close schools to the public and only allow essential personnel in, teachers, students and parents were tasked with shifting the learning environment overnight. Leaders at Mena Public School District and ...

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Around the Nation

Trump to pardon women’s suffrage leader Susan Anthony WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump said Tuesday he will pardon Susan B. Anthony, a women’s suffrage leader arrested for voting in 1872 in violation of laws permitting only men to vote. Trump said he would sign “a full and complete pardon” later Tuesday, the 100-year anniversary of the ratification of the 19th ...

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