FROM THE OUACHITA CIRCUIT COURT [NO. 52CR-15-182] HONORABLE
ROBIN J. CARROLL, JUDGE
Law Firm, by: Michael Kiel Kaiser and William O.
"Bill" James, Jr., for appellant.
Rutledge, Att'y Gen., by: Jacob H. Jones, Ass't
Att'y Gen., for appellee.
BRANDON J. HARRISON, JUDGE.
2016, a Ouachita County jury convicted Tommy Lee Radford on
two counts of threatening a judicial officer and one count of
terroristic threatening. Radford challenges the sufficiency
of the State's evidence against him. He also argues that
his constitutional right to a speedy trial was violated. None
of Radford's arguments are preserved for review, so we
must affirm his conviction without addressing the merit of
his points. Although he did not challenge the length of his
sentence (95 years) in this appeal, it is illegal on its
face. The problem, in a nutshell, is that the sentence is too
long given the habitual status that is checked on the
sentencing order. More on this later. A facially illegal
sentence is a matter that we routinely address on our own
initiative. The conviction on every count is affirmed; but we
remand the case to the circuit court for resentencing.
State's case against Radford is based on Radford's
conduct after he appeared before a circuit judge, in a
different criminal case, regarding a bond decision. In this
case, the State's proof rests primarily on Camden police
officer Ben Opelt's testimony. Officer Opelt testified
that on 26 January 2015, Radford became "upset"
after circuit judge Edwin A. Keaton set a $50, 000 secured
bond in a criminal case against Radford. Officer Opelt told
the jury about vulgar verbal statements and obscene gestures
that Radford had repeatedly made after exiting the courtroom
once the bond decision had been made. The bad behavior
escalated as the officer and Radford entered the jail portion
of the court building.
person commits the offense of first-degree terroristic
threatening if, with the purpose of terrorizing another
person, he or she threatens to cause death or serious
physical injury to another person. Ark. Code Ann. §
5-13-301(a)(1)(A) (Repl. 2013). A person acts with purpose
with respect to the results of his conduct when it is his or
her conscious object to cause the results. Ark. Code Ann.
§ 5-2-202. "Serious physical injury"
means a physical injury that creates a substantial risk of
death or that causes protracted disfigurement, protracted
impairment of health, or loss or protracted impairment of the
function of any bodily member or organ. Ark. Code Ann.
Code Ann. § 5-53-202 makes threatening a judicial
officer a crime:
(a) A person commits the offense of threatening a judicial
official or juror if the person directly or indirectly utters
or otherwise makes a threat toward another person whom the
person knows or should know to be a:
(1) Judicial official;
(2) Juror; or
(3) Member of the immediate family of a judicial official or
(b)(1) Threatening a judicial official or juror is a Class B
felony if the person threatens:
(A) To cause death or serious physical injury to a judicial
official, juror, or any member of a judicial official's