John Wesley Hall

Arkansas man charged with violent crimes pleads innocent

A man in Hot Springs is facing serious jail time if he is found guilty of contributing to the deaths of three other people. Arkansas authorities say the 34-year-old man is responsible for the shooting deaths of three other adults in Hot Springs last year. Despite the nature of the violent crimes the man allegedly committed, he is entitled to face his charges in a criminal court. 

According to the report, the man was arrested back in December after three people -- a 40-year-old man, a 46-year-old woman and a 60-year-old woman -- were all found shot to death in a Hot Springs residence. The probable cause affidavit issued to the court says the 34-year-old allegedly got into an argument with all three individuals, who were friends of his, regarding an issue of stolen property. The affidavit does not go into greater detail about the nature of this argument or of the allegedly stolen goods. 

A witness testified that the man approached him and admitted to killing all three people. He also allegedly asked for help in hiding the bodies. The man was arrested and pleaded not guilty on March 6 in front of the Garland County Circuit Court. If he is found guilty despite his plea, he could face life in prison for each count with no chance of parole, or even the death penalty. 

Given the stakes of such punishment, it is vital that the court system afford the man a fair trial. Even in the case of the most violent crimes, the potential for innocence is too compelling to be ignored. The man's defense team will carefully scrutinize the evidence brought forth by Arkansas prosecutors in an effort to build a compelling case that could see these serious charges reduced or even dropped. 

Source: usnews.com, "Arkansas Man Accused of Triple Murder Pleads Not Guilty", March 8, 2018

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