Election official arrested

Friday, October 6, 2017

A member of the Carroll County Election Commission has been arrested on multiple misdemeanor charges.

Eugene Walden, 44, of Eureka Springs, was booked into the Carroll County Detention Center on Tuesday, Oct. 3, on charges of communicating a false alarm, fleeing in a vehicle, resisting arrest, aggravated assault of a law enforcement officer and battery in the second degree, according to the detention center intake log.

An incident report submitted by CCSO officer Marc Morris says he was dispatched to Highway 187 near the “Golden Gate Bridge” for a two-vehicle traffic accident. When Morris approached the Missionary Baptist Church, the report says he observed a man, later identified as Walden, parked on the grass in front of the sanctuary. Walden exited his vehicle and began waving his arms at Morris, the report says.

The report says that Morris came to a stop, and Walden retrieved a large broken painting from his car and rushed over to Morris with it. Walden threw the painting through the open passenger-side window of Morris’s vehicle onto the seat, according to the report, and began yelling about how Morris’ department, the fire department, destroyed the painting when making illegal entry into Walden’s father’s residence.

Morris said he was not with the fire department, the report says, and was en route to a vehicle accident. According to the report, Walden said, “There is no accident! I called you and told you there was an accident because it was the only way you’d come!” The report says Walden removed the painting from Morris’ car and began to walk away. Morris told him to stop and said he needed to talk to him, the report says, and Walden screamed “No!” and rushed back over to his car. As Walden did so, the report says Morris yelled for him to stop multiple times. Walden disregarded his instructions, entered his car and sped away toward Beaver on Highway 187, according to the report.

The report says Morris turned around to follow him, and Walden accelerated. Morris already had his overhead emergency light activated, the report says, but activated his siren as well. Walden refused to pull over when Morris caught up with him, the report says, so Morris called in a vehicle pursuit.

The report continues, saying Walden drove about two to three miles before turning onto CR 2332. Morris kept following him closely, and Walden continued driving at a speed that was excessive for the gravel surface, the report says. Walden eventually turned down what appeared to be a long driveway, it says. However, a 12-foot metal gate was closed over the driveway about 50 yards ahead of Walden, the report says, so he came to an abrupt stop, exited his car and began running toward the gate ahead.

The report says Morris exited his car and began to chase Walden. As he did so, it says, Walden’s pants and underwear began to drop down, causing him to fall forward onto the ground. When Morris caught up with him, the report says, he noticed “feces on his bottom.”

Morris ordered Walden to remain on his stomach, the report says, but Walden turned onto his back and began kicking at Morris’s knees wildly as Morris reached for Walden’s arm in an effort to gain control of him. The report says Morris barely moved out of the way, and he struck Walden in the face with his right closed fist in self defense. Walden spun around and managed to stand up, the report says. Morris attempted again to gain control of Walden’s arms, and Walden swung at Morris’ face with a closed fist, the report says. Morris bent his head forward, according to the report, and Walden landed a blow to his forehead instead of his face, which caused minor cuts to Morris’ forehead and scalp.

Morris again struck Walden with a closed fist, the report says, and he fell to the ground. At that point, the report says Walden stopped fighting and began crying and telling Morris that he “needed to poop.” Morris told Walden he would allow him to do so, the report says.

The report says Walden was concerned that “he didn’t have anything to wipe with,” so Morris told him that he could remove his pants, which were down to his knees, and use his underwear to wipe. Morris explained that Walden could then put his pants back on, it says. Walden was agreeable to this and did so, the report says.

Once Walden had finished defecating, the report says, he picked up the feces using the shorts in his hands and stood up. It says Walden then reared back with the feces in his right hand and threw it directly at Morris’ face. Morris dodged it, the report says, as Walden stripped off his shirt and ran toward the barbed wire fence behind him.

Walden dove over the fence, it says, and Morris jumped it as well. The report says Walden began running naked down his driveway, so Morris yelled for him to stop and gave chase. Just as Morris reached Walden, the report says Walden stopped, and Morris placed him in handcuffs. The report says Morris walked Walden back over to the large metal gate and, realizing he would need help to get Walden back over the fence, handcuffed his right arm to it and returned to his car to call for backup.

The report says Cpl. Mark Ashby, Sgt. Lynn Hahn, Deputy Del-Real and Sgt. Mark Bailey arrived on the scene, and they approached Walden together. It says Ashby had a functioning body camera that was activated when he arrived. Walden became agitated and began cursing at them, the report says. Additionally, it says Walden tried to hold onto the gate and refused to cooperate with deputies by wedging himself between the bars as they tried to detach him from the gate and place him inside Ashby’s patrol unit. Eventually, they were able to place Walden inside the car, it says, and he was transported to the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office.

The report says Bailey and Hahn assisted Morris with performing an inventory of Walden’s car. During the inventory, the report says, Bailey located a prescription bottle containing a small baggie of 1 gram of suspected marijuana inside a brown shaving kit in the back seat of the car. Also inside the shaving kit were several bottles of prescription medication that were prescribed to Walden, the report says. Bailey also located a nonfunctioning and unloaded EIBAR semi-automatic handgun in a leather sheath inside the trunk, according to the report. The marijuana was seized as evidence, the report says, and the handgun was taken for safekeeping. The shaving kit containing the prescription medication was taken to CCSO to be placed into Walden’s personal property, the report says, and the car was released to a towing company.

The report says photographs were taken of the injuries to Morris’ forehead and scalp, and the gun and marijuana were booked into evidence.

The Carroll County Sheriff’s Office said Walden appeared before Carroll County District Judge Dale Ramsey with his attorney on Wednesday, Oct. 4, and was released on his own recognizance provided he seek treatment within 48 hours.

Walden has a pending felony charge in an unrelated incident. He was arrested in April and is charged with second-degree forgery. Court filings show that Walden is alleged to have signed a legal document without authorization, but no further details were available. A pretrial hearing in that case is scheduled for 9 a.m. Monday, Oct. 9, at the Carroll County Western District Courthouse in Eureka Springs.

Walden could not be reached for comment.

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