Sheriff: Officer allowed inmates to smoke, drink beer in cruiser

Published: Oct. 12, 2021 at 5:12 PM CDT
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CROSS COUNTY, Ark. (KAIT) - A Northeast Arkansas police officer found himself briefly behind bars after deputies said he let two inmates smoke and drink beer in his patrol car.

On Monday, Cross County sheriff’s deputies arrested 49-year-old Darrell Crowder on suspicion of furnishing prohibited articles and impairing the operations of a vital public facility.

According to a news release, Crowder picked up two inmates from the Cross County Detention Center on Thursday, Oct. 7, for city court in Parkin.

Sheriff David West said the inmates wore jail uniforms and handcuffs when they left the jail.

Once court concluded, West said Crowder drove the inmates to a home in Parkin and allowed one to enter “to retrieve money from a family member.”

Crowder then took the inmates to a gas station to buy beer and cigarettes before returning to the jail, Tuesday’s news release stated.

During the return trip, West said Crowder allowed the inmates to “drink the beer and then throw the empty can out of the marked police unit.”

The sheriff also said Crowder allowed the pair to smoke cigarettes on the condition they “not inform the detention center of their actions.”

According to online records, sheriff’s deputies arrested Crowder at 6:02 p.m. Monday, Oct. 11. He was released at 8:57 that same night.

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