Hagler sentenced to 6 years in prison

Tuesday, November 2, 2021
Neal Hagler

A Berryville man who pleaded guilty to negligent homicide in 2019 after an accident resulted in the death of his girlfriend has been sentenced to six years in prison after violating the terms of his probation.

An order dated Oct. 25 and signed by Special Circuit Judge Gary Arnold says Neal Hagler’s probation is revoked and that he is sentenced to a six years in prison, to be followed by four years suspended imposition of sentence. Hagler will receive no credit for time served in the county jail.

Hagler has been held at the Carroll County Detention Center since April 26 — the two-year anniversary of his original sentencing hearing — after turning himself in at the Arkansas Department of Probation and Parole’s Berryville office. Arnold had issued two separate warrants for Hagler’s arrest in June and July 2020 after probation officials reported that he had violated the terms of his probation by failing to report, failing to provide a sample for a drug test, admitting to using marijuana and methamphetamine and failing to maintain employment.

Hagler, 22, was sentenced in April 2019 to one year in the county jail and 15 years’ supervised probation after pleading guilty to the felony negligent homicide and four misdemeanor counts. Hagler’s girlfriend, 20-year-old Destiny Mock, died in a Springfield, Mo., hospital on June 24, 2018 — two days after the accident that occurred on Carroll County Road 428.

According to a preliminary fatal crash summary from the Arkansas State Police, Hagler was driving a 2011 Chevrolet westbound on Carroll County Road 428 at 9:50 p.m. when he failed to stop at the intersection of County Road 404 and struck a tree. Hagler was arrested after a Carroll County Sheriff’s Office deputy noticed the odor of intoxicants and he failed a field sobriety test, according to a probable-cause affidavit.

At his sentencing hearing on April 26, 2019 — with Arnold presiding — Hagler apologized to Mock’s family and admitted that he was under the influence of alcohol when the accident occurred.

“I was speeding,” Hagler said. “I had a wreck and caused the death of Destiny Mock. I had marijuana in the vehicle and I had no driver’s license.”

Hagler, who was credited for 181 days served in the Carroll County Detention Center before his sentencing, was released from jail on Oct. 27, 2019. He was arrested less than three months later, on Jan. 14, 2020, and accused of violating the terms of his probation. He was released 12 days later on a $10,000 bond.

A probation officer reported in June 2020 that Hagler was “actively evading supervision.” In an order filed June 19, 2020, Arnold instructed the circuit clerk to issue a warrant for Hagler’s arrest. Hagler failed to appear at a July 24, 2020, revocation hearing, prompting Arnold to order that a second warrant be issued.

Arnold, a now-retired Saline County circuit judge, was appointed to preside over Hagler’s case after Carroll County Circuit Judge Scott Jackson recused himself at prosecutors’ request in July 2018. A motion requesting Jackson’s recusal noted that he was “well-acquainted with the parents of the defendant.”

As of Monday afternoon, Hagler remained in custody in the county jail.

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: