Trio Sentenced In Meth Case

Thursday, March 23, 2006 4:11 PM CST

By Betsy Turner

Times Record • bturner@swtimes.com

Three people accused of being at home while methamphetamine was
being manufactured there pleaded guilty to drug charges Wednesday
in Crawford County Circuit Court.

James Mullis, 29, Brenda Mullis, 47, and Mark Preston McDaniel, 21,
all of Rudy, appeared before Circuit Judge Mike Medlock at the plea
hearing. James Mullis was charged with possession of
methamphetamine and possession of drug paraphernalia. Brenda Mullis
was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia.

McDaniel was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia and in a
separate case pleaded guilty to possession of methamphetamine.

Medlock sentenced James Mullis to six years in the Arkansas
Department of Correction. He was also given a 10-year suspended
sentence to run concurrently with the prison sentence. Medlock
authorized a boot camp recommendation for him.

Brenda Mullis was ordered to serve 120 days in the regional
correction facility plus a six-year suspended sentence. McDaniel
was sentenced to 10 years in the Arkansas Department of Correction
plus a 10-year suspended sentence.

Medlock authorized a $1,000 reporting bond for each of the
defendants.

According to prosecuting attorney files, law enforcement
authorities received information on April 1 from a confidential
informant that methamphetamine was being manufactured at James
Mullis’ residence on 11129 Ozark Trail in Rudy. A search
warrant was executed May 1 at the residence. All three defendants
were inside the house along with five minor children. Police found
numerous items and chemicals used in the manufacture of
methamphetamine. A brass pipe with burnt residue, methamphetamine,
marijuana and other items of drug paraphernalia were found in the
home.

McDaniel also was charged in connection with a Feb. 22, 2005,
incident at the Van Buren Wal-Mart. McDaniel was accused of
stealing lug nuts from the store and place under arrest by police.
After he was searched, 2.5 grams of methamphetamine were found on
him.

Also Wednesday, a Berryville woman originally charged with filing a
false report of a crime pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of
obstructing governmental operations. Christy McCaila Huggins, 31,
of Berryville was sentenced to a one-year suspended jail sentence.
Medlock ordered that she pay $1,500 in restitution for police and
investigative work related to the case. She was also ordered to pay
a $750 fine and $150 in court costs.

Police reports state the her fiance reported Sept. 25 that Huggins
had gone missing while they were inside the Van Buren Wal-Mart.
Huggins later called her fiance and said that she was being held
against her will at an unknown residence. Police later located
Huggins at a Berryville home but she said she was there of her own
free will.

Huggins filed a police report and claimed she had been kidnapped at
the Arkansas State Police headquarters in Fort Smith on Sept. 28.
Huggins made inconsistent statements to police and told police she
had been drugged and taken from the Wal-Mart. Video surveillance
tapes showed Huggins left the Wal-Mart willingly. She later told
police that she had given false statements about the events of that
day.

Other pleas heard Wednesday were:

w Martin Jones Jr., 50, of Chester pleaded guilty to felon in
possession of a firearm. Jones was sentenced to one year in the
Arkansas Department of Correction plus five years suspended. A
$1,500 reporting bond was authorized for Jones. He was arrested
Aug. 7 after police were called to his residence regarding a
compliant that Jones was drunk and shoot dogs. Jones, a convicted
felon, denied shooting the dogs but said he did have a firearm.

w Steven Cypert, 39, of Van Buren pleaded guilty to possession of
marijuana with intent to deliver and driving while intoxicated. He
was given a three-year suspended sentence and ordered to complete
100 days of community service. Medlock ordered that he pay $350
court costs and a $400 fine.

Cypert’s driver’s license was ordered to be suspended
for six months. He was given credit for serving one day in jail.
Cypert was arrested April 23 after failing field sobriety tests
during a traffic stop. Police found several small bags of marijuana
in Cypert’s vehicle.

Times Record

Fort Smith Arkansas

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