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No charges filed in Yell County shooting death


CENTERVILLE — The prosecuting attorney for the 15th Judicial District said he hasn’t made a decision concerning a shooting death that occurred May 26 in Centerville.

Deputies with the Yell County Sheriff’s Office and Arkansas State Police found a deceased male, later identified as Tony Hester, in the driveway of a residence on State Highway 154 at approximately 5:45 p.m. Sunday, May 26.

According to a Facebook release from Yell County Sheriff Nick Gault, a shooting occurred at residence. The sheriff stated, “This is an ongoing investigation and no further information will be released at this time.”

Gault went on to say there is no danger to the public, as investigators believe this to be an isolated incident.

Thomas Tatum told the Yell County Record he was waiting on the entire investigation file to be turned over by the Arkansas State Police. Without the file, he cannot make any determination on whether or not charges will be filed.


LITTLE ROCK — The Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) released its yearly report on induced abortions, recording no abortions in the state in 2023.

Following the landmark Dobbs v. Jackson decision in 2022, Arkansas law prohibited abortion in all cases except to save the life of the mother. Prior to the Dobbs decision, the ADH reported around 3,200 abortions on average each year. Arkansas is one of 14 states with a “total ban” on abortion.

“It’s the constant teaching of the Church that abortion is always gravely immoral, and we know it’s never medically necessary, so we do welcome that report,” said Catherine Phillips, director of Respect Life in the Diocese of Little Rock.

The Family Council published a press release on June 3, which stated: “All in all, our team estimates Arkansas’ prolife laws are protecting thousands of women and unborn children from abortion each

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year. Arkansas’ pro-life laws are protecting women, and they are saving unborn children. That is something to celebrate.”

Arkansans for Limited Government is working to counter the current abortion laws in Arkansas. The group is collecting signatures to put the “Arkansas Abortion Amendment” on the ballot this November. If passed, the amendment would allow women to obtain abortions up to 18 weeks of pregnancy in cases of “rape, incest, fatal fetal anomaly” and “to protect a pregnant female’s life or to protect a pregnant female from a physical disorder, physical illness, or physical injury.”

Arkansas Right to Life Executive Director Rose Mimms said the initiative is “using these very rare cases to make abortion available for any reason.” She said the ADH’s report of no abortions, even to save the life of the mother, shows abortion does not need to be available for any reason. “The citizens of Arkansas share in the responsibility to legally protect every human life from conception to natural death,” Bishop Anthony Taylor of the Diocese of Little Rock explained in a statement in February. “It is critical that all registered voters decline to sign the petition to allow the Arkansas abortion amendment on the November 2024 ballot.”

The ADH’s report includes neither the number of chemical abortions achieved through medications received by mail nor women who have traveled across state lines to obtain abortions.

The state has experienced more mothers surrendering babies as more women are choosing life. “In just the last few weeks, we have had two instances of parents who have surrendered their newborn babies at our fire stations because they believed they had no other choice, for whatever the reason,” Little Rock Mayor Frank Scott Jr. said in a May 15 press release.

A “Safe Haven” baby box was just installed at one of Little Rock’s fire stations. Mimms said the option “can help a mother to safely surrender her child to an official location, hospital, law enforcement or manned fire department in Arkansas or anonymously in a Safe Haven Baby Box.”

Phillips said pro-life efforts in Arkansas continue to provide women and families with resources to choose life.

“We do know the reality is that people do choose abortion, but we work for a world

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where people won’t choose abortion, where people don’t think it’s their only choice,” Phillips said. “We have a very robust network of pregnancy centers, nonprofits and other organizations to help women and families, and, of course, we hope that every one of our parishes is coming alongside women that face challenges.”


Children’s Miracle

Network Hospitals, partners raise $5.4 million for Arkansas

Children’s Hospital

LITTLE ROCK — More than 40 Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals (CMN Hospitals) partners raised $5,416,243 in 2023 for Arkansas Children’s Hospital and Arkansas Children’s Northwest.

CMN Hospitals raises funds and awareness for 170 children’s hospitals across the U.S. and Canada.

Arkansas Children’s has been a member since the organization’s founding in 1983. This month, CMN Hospitals announced a record-breaking fundraising year, raising more than $449 million in 2023 – a 6.9% increase in fundraising year-over-year from 2022.

“The success of these collaborative efforts is a testament to the hard work and dedication of hundreds of volunteers who selflessly give their time and energy to support the cause,” said Fred Scarborough, executive vice president and chief development officer for Arkansas Children’s. “We are grateful to each of the Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals partners for their dedication to improving child health for the children of Arkansas and beyond.”

Arkansas Children’s recognized the following top five CMN Hospitals partners: Walmart and Sam’s Club with $1.69 million; Log A Load for Kids with $477,436; Love’s Travel Stops with $410,294; Ace Hardware Corp with $185,232; and Panda Restaurant Group, Inc. with $160,461, along with several other CMN Hospitals partners and programs for their 2023 contributions.

Arkansas Dance Marathon, Extra Life, radiothons, telethons and other local events also contributed to the overall fundraising 2023 total.

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