3 arrested after standoff appear in court

Friday, November 8, 2019

By Scott Loftis


Three people who were arrested after a standoff with special response officers in late September in Eureka Springs appeared in court briefly on Monday.

John Callahan, Marilyn Sloas and Sebastian Valentino appeared before Carroll County Circuit Judge Scott Jackson in Berryville. Because prosecutors have not yet filed formal charges, their cases were continued until 9 a.m. Monday, Nov. 18, at the Western District Courthouse in Eureka Springs.

The three were arrested on Sept. 25 at a residence on the Eureka Springs Historic Loop, after officers with the Tri-City Special Response Team surrounded the residence for several hours.

The arrests stem from the alleged stabbing of David Sjoberg earlier that morning at the Iron Horse Stables on Highway 62 between Berryville and Eureka Springs.

According to a probable cause affidavit written by Lt. Blake Ringberg, an investigator with the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office, a witness said Callahan, Sloas and Valentino knocked on Sjoberg’s door and Valentino asked if there was any mail for Callahan, a former roommate of Sjoberg.

The witness told investigators that after Sjoberg replied that Callahan had nothing at the residence, Valentino pulled a large hunting knife from his waistband and stabbed Sjoberg in the neck, according to the affidavit.

Callahan, Sloas and Valentino left the scene, with Sloas driving, the affidavit says.

Callahan, 67, was booked into the Carroll County Detention Center on on felony charges of hindering apprehension or prosecution and tampering with physical evidence. Sloas, 41, was booked on the same charges. Valentino, 49, was booked on a charge of first-degree battery. Valentino also has multiple pending charges related to three previous incidents in 2019. He remains in the Carroll County Detention Center on a $500,000 bond. Callahan and Sloas are free on bond.

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