Tempers flare at city council meeting

Published: Mar. 13, 2023 at 10:54 PM CDT
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MARKED TREE, Ark. (KAIT) - Tensions rose at the Marked Tree City Council meeting over a recent rehiring.

The Marked Tree Fire Department rehired Jackie Ragan last week after being found not guilty of stealing equipment from it.

He faces charges in Sharp County, something resident Tonya Carpenter brought up, sparking a reaction from the audience.

“Those charges didn’t happen in Marked Tree so why are you bringing it up in a city council meeting,” someone in the meeting said.

Carpenter turned to respond but eventually turned her attention to the mayor once more.

Carpenter also expressed concerns about Ragan’s ability to police frequencies.

“Does he have access to police frequencies?” she asked. “Sometimes,” the mayor responded. Then he refuted his claim, and Carpenter said they eventually would share frequencies.

Ragan, who was at the meeting, once served as a police officer for the city before leaving.

Carpenter and the mayor went back and forth on that as well.

Ragan wanted to speak in front of the council.

“Hey Mr. Mayor, I think I ought to have the right to talk,” he said but was shot down by Mayor Danny Johnson.

Carpenter was left wanting more to say, but an executive session was called before she could speak.

Ragan told Region 8 News off camera he would consider giving an interview at a later time with his lawyer present.

Mayor Johnson declined to speak.