HS man sen­tenced to 10 years in prison

The Sentinel-Record - - FRONT PAGE - STEVEN MROSS

A Hot Springs man ar­rested with drugs and a gun ear­lier this year fol­low­ing a one-ve­hi­cle wreck was sen­tenced to 10 years in prison Mon­day af­ter plead­ing guilty in Gar­land

County Cir­cuit


De­cente Mon­trell John­son, 27, who has re­mained in cus­tody since his ar­rest July 8, pleaded guilty to si­mul­ta­ne­ous pos­ses­sion of drugs and firearms while ad­di­tional felony charges of first-de­gree forgery, pos­ses­sion of a con­trolled sub­stance, mar­i­juana, with pur­pose to de­liver, theft by re­ceiv­ing of a firearm and pos­ses­sion of drug para­pher­na­lia were with­drawn.

His sen­tence will run con­cur­rently with the re­vo­ca­tion of his pro­ba­tion from con­vic­tions in 2012 and 2014 on drug charges. Court costs were ex­punged for time served since his ar­rest.

Deputy Pros­e­cu­tor Trent Daniels noted Tues­day John­son had “a ton of charges” but agreed to plead to the more se­ri­ous charge of si­mul­ta­ne­ous pos­ses­sion, which will re­quire him to serve a greater per­cent­age of his sen­tence be­fore be­ing el­i­gi­ble for pa­role.

Ac­cord­ing to the af­fi­davit, on July 8, shortly af­ter 8:30 a.m., Arkansas State Po­lice Cpl. Corey Ray was dis­patched to a one-ve­hi­cle wreck in the 3900 block of Malvern Road in­volv­ing a white Chevy S-10 pickup on its side in a ditch. He made con­tact with the driver and owner, iden­ti­fied as John­son, who was be­side the ve­hi­cle with a black bag.

John­son said he was com­ing from Hot Springs when he lost con­trol and rolled over in the ditch. Ray noted John­son was “very ner­vous” and wit­nesses noted he had not tried to call po­lice af­ter the wreck.

A re­volver was found on the dash of the ve­hi­cle and John­son told Ray “his home boy” had the weapon in his ve­hi­cle the night be­fore and must have for­got to take it with him. A com­puter check re­vealed the re­volver was re­ported stolen in Hot Springs.

The black bag he had was found to con­tain dig­i­tal scales, two bag­gies of mar­i­juana and a jar of mar­i­juana, with a to­tal of 70 grams, and mul­ti­ple empty bag­gies. In search­ing the ve­hi­cle, Ray found three coun­ter­feit $20 bills and a search of John­son un­cov­ered $1,148 in cash in his pos­ses­sion.

The cash and drugs were con­fis­cated by the 18th Ju­di­cial District East Drug Task Force which took over the in­ves­ti­ga­tion. It was also de­ter­mined John­son had war­rants for his ar­rest from Hot Springs po­lice.


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