Clarksville judge pleads guilty to two counts related to January DWI case | Arkansas Blog

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Clarksville judge pleads guilty to two counts related to January DWI case

Posted By on Wed, Apr 19, 2017 at 10:25 AM


The citizen journalist over at the Bad Government in Arkansas blog has been hard at work covering the case of Fifth Judicial Circuit Court Judge William "Bill" Pearson, who plead guilty to two misdemeanors on Monday, including DWI and reckless driving, related to a January 20 incident near Clarksville in which he led police on a short chase after blowing through a DWI checkpoint.

You can read more about the case from the BGA blog here.

As seen in the police dashcam video of the incident, Pearson, driving a gray GMC pickup, came perilously close to hitting three officers manning the checkpoint, then led them on a chase of over a mile, running off the road several times. After pulling into a parking lot, Pearson appears to try to drive away again, but a Trooper in pursuit pushed the judge's pickup with his patrol car, disabling the truck.  After officers with guns draw repeatedly called for him to step out, Pearson emerged, slurring his words heavily. Asked how much he'd had to drink, Pearson told the officers "None of your business."

Pearson was charged with four misdemeanor counts in the case, including fleeing, reckless driving, DWI and refusal to submit to a breathalyzer test. Retired Judge John Langston was seated as a special judge in the case, with Little Rock attorney Jason Barrett appointed as a special prosecutor.

On Monday, Pearson plead guilty to the charges of DWI and reckless driving. The charges of fleeing and refusal to submit to a breathalyzer were dropped. He was sentenced to six months with the sentence suspended, required to pay a $700 fine and attend alcohol education classes. His driver's license was also suspended for six months.

In a statement read by Pearson in court, the judge admitted that he was driving while drunk and accepts responsibility, saying "the shame and embarrassment is mine." He said he believed the police cars in the road were there for a traffic stop or accident.  He apologized to his family, his staff, the court, the bar, the judge in the case, the judges who covered his court while he was suspended from the bench, and the citizens of the Fifth District before saying that the incident was "an isolated lapse of judgement and did not affect my duties and performance on the bench prior to and most assuredly will not in the future."

UPDATE: Pearson's attorney, Jeff Rosenzweig has been in contact to point out that the Bad Government Blog utilized a photoshopped photo of him (seen at left below) which features Rosenzweig carrying a box of files which says "Drunk Judge Case." The photo is an altered version of a photo (provided to the Times by Rosenzweig) taken during another case. Rosenzweig said that while the photoshopped picture is "funny," if the blog is going to advocate for integrity "they should exhibit a little integrity themselves."
click to enlarge The photoshopped photo
  • The photoshopped photo
click to enlarge The original
  • The original


Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments (5)

Showing 1-5 of 5

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-5 of 5

Add a comment

More by David Koon

  • Join us Sept. 21 for Pig & Swig!

    Make plans to join Arkansas Times at 6 p.m. Sept. 21 for Pig & Swig, an event centered around two of life's finest pleasures: sippin' whiskey and fine swine. The event, which benefits the Downtown Little Rock Partnership, will be held at the Heifer Project Pavilion and Urban Farm near the Clinton Center.
    • Sep 18, 2017
  • French Hill to join anti-violence leaders for MacArthur Park press conference

    A press release from the office of Arkansas Congressman French Hill says that Hill will join a press conference set for tomorrow that will spotlight the efforts of the Victory Over Violence Coalition, which seeks to promote peaceful resolution of conflict.The press conference will begin at 3 p.m. tomorrow at Little Rock's MacArthur Park, at the corner of E. 9th and Commerce Streets.
    • Sep 15, 2017
  • Family of man shot by LRPD claims cruiser dashcam video confirms their account

    Attorneys for the family of a man killed by an LRPD officer in October 2016 allege that a video released to the media yesterday, shot from a dashcam in the officer's cruiser, both proves the family's account of the shooting and shows that the LRPD didn't fully comply with the state Freedom of Information Act when the family requested all materials related to the case. Attorneys for the family say the video was not included in materials released to them following a recent FOIA request.
    • Sep 14, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • In Little Rock, Marco Rubio sells American exceptionalism

    This is Rubio's axiomatic answer to Donald Trump's insistence that he and he alone will Make America Great Again: America is the greatest, always has been.
    • Feb 22, 2016
  • Trump immigration protest at LR: Quick and fierce

    It was not even 24 hours ago that Sophia Said, director of the Interfaith Center; City Director Kathy Webb and others decided to organize a protest today of Donald Trump's executive order that has left people from Muslim countries languishing in airports or unable to come to the US at all — people with visas, green cards,a  post-doc graduate student en route to Harvard, Google employees abroad, families. I got the message today before noon; others didn't find out until it was going on. But however folks found out, they turned out in huge numbers, more than thousand men, women and children, on the grounds of the state Capitol to listen to speakers from all faiths and many countries.
    • Jan 29, 2017
  • Judge anticipates punishment of lawyers in Fort Smith class action case

    Federal Judge P.K. Holmes of Fort Smith issued a 32-page ruling yesterday indicating he contemplates punishment of 16 lawyers who moved a class action lawsuit against an insurance company out of his court to a state court in Polk County after a settlement had been worked out.
    • Apr 15, 2016

Most Viewed

Most Recent Comments

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation