Citizens raise questions after county judge’s memorial is moved

Updated: Apr. 28, 2021 at 8:27 PM CDT
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WOODRUFF CO., Ark. (KAIT) - Several people in Woodruff County are asking the quorum court why a memorial for a previous county judge was relocated from the courthouse in Augusta to Patterson.

Charles Dallas served as the Woodruff County Judge from January 2009 to December 2020.

He passed away a month after retiring and a memorial was placed at the courthouse.

But, following last week’s quorum court meeting, it was moved.

“Whatever is the reason behind it. Just be transparent,” said John Ball, a Woodruff County resident. “Tell us and if it’s a law that says you can’t do it, okay that’s it. But, don’t try to do it in secrecy.”

Ball was a longtime friend of Judge Dallas. He learned through Facebook that Judge Dallas’s memorial was relocated.

The decision came from an Executive Session of the Woodruff County Quorum Court and he wonders why, as there are several other memorials on the same property.

“There is a lot of different things and memorials around the courthouse that from different that are placed in memorial of. There’s also a wall there for the veterans and things like that,” Ball said. “So, it makes one question why the memorial for Charles Dallas can’t be at the courthouse.”

Ball says he has reached out to a few members of the court and he has not received a response.

According to current County Judge Larry Key, the members said during an executive session they had received complaints about the memorial’s size, lights, and pavers.

Key said the memorial was larger than approved.

While no disrespect was intended, he said the court just did not want to set a precedent.

The court agreed only the tree could stay.

However, Judge Key says when he arrived this week the entire memorial was removed.

Those close to Judge Dallas decided to place it in Patterson, the judge’s hometown.

Ball has requested to speak about the entire situation at the next meeting set for May 17.

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