The state Board of Corrections
at a special called meeting this morning voted without dissent to name interim chief Kevin Murphy
as permanent head of the Community Correction Department. There was no change in his existing pay of $123,380.
Murphy was put in charge
after Gov. Asa Hutchinson
fired Sheila Sharp
for raising questions about the sufficiency of agency parole and probation officer staffing.
Murphy brings a checkered resume to the job. At one time he had a deal being paid by a nonprofit that worked in behalf of agency employees and also drew Correction Department retirement. He went volunteer on the employee benevolent association, and it stopped selling insurance,
after he became interim director. Murphy had been making about $250,000 a year, a legislative audit found
in citing appearance of conflict
of interest. His record as a prison official also bears some review. It includes federal court action relative to brutality toward a female inmate, a civil rights case brought against him that resulted in pre-trial diversion.