Update (10:45 a.m.):
BENTON, AR - Former Saline County sheriff Bruce Pennington was arrested this morning after prosecutors filed charges (see attached
) against him that are outlined below.
He was taken into custody at the Walmart store in Benton.Original story (9:35 a.m.):
SALINE COUNTY, AR - Officials say charges will be filed Friday in Saline County Circuit Court accusing former sheriff Bruce Pennington of stealing money from the agency and reducing the community service sentence for a friend in exchange for the installation of marble countertops in his home.
Pennington faces charges of Theft of Property and Abuse of Public Trust, both felonies. He also faces a misdemeanor charge of Theft of Property for allegedly stealing $800 from a jail phone kiosk and using it to pay fines from a previous Public Intoxication and Resisting Arrest charge stemming from an altercation with Benton Police outside a restaurant.
Charges will also be filed against former C.I.D. Lt. Mike Frost, who resigned from the agency earlier this year. He faces two felony charges of Delivery of a Controlled Substance and Illegal Use of a Communication Device. Prosecutors say Frost made a deal with a confidential informant to exchange prescription drugs for sex.
Former sheriff's office bookkeeper Jo Nell Mallory also faces two felony charges of Theft of Property and Abuse of Public Trust. Prosecutors say she stole $2,500 from the same jail kiosk and also got work done at her house in exchange for lowering fines.
We'll have more details on this developing story, so check back for updates.