Carnahan punished for refusing responsibility | Arkansas Blog

Carnahan punished for refusing responsibility

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The U.S. magistrate in Fort Smith yesterday overruled a plea agreement and imposed a harsher $2,000 fine on former U.S. Marshal Ray Carnahan because she was disgusted with his unwillingness to admit his guilt in an altercation with a Game and Fish officer last year.

Carnahan was to pay a $500 fine, according to a plea agreement he signed with the U. S. attorney’s office. ...

Jones, who said she had never been in such a situation in her 18 years on the bench, said she was concerned that Carnahan was manipulating the justice system by agreeing to plead guilty and pay a small fine while continuing to profess outside court that he was innocent. ...

“It’s not right,” Jones said. “You have to pick what you want to do. If you’re not guilty, you can have your day in court. If you’re guilty, then accept responsibility.” ...

Jones offered Carnahan a chance Thursday to withdraw his guilty plea and go to trial. Following a brief recess to consider the offer, Carnahan’s son Chris, acting as his father’s attorney, said Carnahan would carry through with the plea deal.


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