JONESBORO, Ark. – Prosecutors and law enforcement officers from Northeast Arkansas received training on the Protect Arkansas Act at an event hosted by the 2nd Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney’s office in Jonesboro.
The comprehensive law reform initiative was explained by Representative Jimmy Gazaway, who stated, “The Protect Arkansas Act is a sweeping approach to reforming the criminal justice system in Arkansas. It brings truth in sentencing to Arkansas by mandating those convicted of the most heinous crimes to serve their full sentence. The law also bolsters rehabilitation efforts for non-violent offenders by allocating more funds to drug courts, mental health courts, and veterans’ courts.”
Gazaway further highlighted how the Act includes provisions to bolster support for crime victims. He expressed his gratitude for the support received from Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders, Attorney General Tim Griffin, and the prosecutors and law enforcement officials across the state, asserting that the passage of the Protect Arkansas Act would not have been possible without their backing.
Prosecuting Attorney Sonia F. Hagood expressed her delight with the turnout at the training session, which included both prosecutors and law enforcement partners.
“It was a privilege to have Bob McMahan and Lori Kumpuris from the Prosecutor Coordinator Office to lead the training. We also had the special treat of having our very own, Representative Jimmy Gazaway explain the bill to us,” Hagood said. “Rep. Gazaway is a steadfast ally to law enforcement and prosecutors. His work on this bill has equipped us with essential tools to make our district safer.”
The Protect Arkansas Act, or Senate Bill 495, was signed into law during this legislative session. Among its key reforms are the elimination of credit bonding and the introduction of truth in sentencing.