Former city councilman pleads guilty to meth sale

Thursday, April 20, 2006

BERRYVILLE -- Former Eureka Springs City Councilman Earl Donald "Bud" Umland, 54, faces up to two possible life sentences after pleading guilty Monday morning in Carroll County Circuit Court to two counts of delivery of methamphetamine in August 2005.

A sentencing hearing was set for June 5, after a pre-sentence report is submitted to Judge Alan D. Epley.

Prosecutor Tony Rogers' motion to dismiss charges of third-degree assault and terroristic threatening in the case was granted. Furthermore, an earlier separate case, in which Umland was charged with possession of pseudoephedrine, a common component of meth, was dismissed.

Umland was arrested by Eureka Springs Police after a traffic stop in which he was found in possession of controlled buy money. which he had apparently obtained from a confidential informant at his motel.

Probation as part of his sentence is a possibility, and recommended minimum sentence on the Class Y felonies is 30 years each, with concurrent sentences also a possibility.

In announcing the plea agreement, ROgers stated that the assault and terroristic threatening charges could probably not be proven, and that the pseudoephedrine possession charge was dismissed as part of negotiations.

Despite a fairly lengthy docket, Monday morning's court action was concluded by shortly after 10 a.m., with six hearings scheduled at 1:30 p.m.

Arraignments on Monday included:

* Donna Kaye Bolinger, 50, of Huntsville -- Violation of Arkansas' hot check law. She allegedly wrote eight bad checks between May 23 and Dec. 2, 2005, to various county businesses, including six liquor stores. The checks totaled $422.96. Prosecutor and bank fees bring the total to $757.76.

* Brandy Lee Davis, 30, of Cassville, Mo. -- Violation of Arkansas' hot check law. She allegedly wrote two checks in July 2005 to a Berryville store, totaling, with fees, $519.88.

* Jimmy Don Chapin Jr., 26, of Berryville -- Three counts of first-degree terroristic threatening, and misdemeanor charges of third-degree domestic battery, first-degree criminal mischief, and disorderly conduct. On April 2 he allegedly struck a family member, punched out the windshield of a woman's car and cursed and screamed at the arresting Berryville policeman.

* Terry Curtis Chaney, 48, of Green Forest -- Possession of a controlled substance (marijuana) and possession of drug paraphernalia. During a March 28 home visit by his probation officer, he was allegedly found in possession of more than 14 grams of marijuana, along with various pipes, a straw, aluminum foil and a light bulb with suspected methamphetamine residue on them.

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