FROM THE CRAIGHEAD COUNTY CIRCUIT COURT, WESTERN DISTRICT
[NO. 16JDR-12-667] HONORABLE PAMELA HONEYCUTT, JUDGE
TROUTT LAW FIRM, BY: R. SCOTT TROUTT, FOR APPELLANT.
EMERSON, P.A., BY: SCOTT EMERSON, FOR APPELLEE.
an appeal from a decree of divorce that the Circuit Court of
Craighead County entered on March 15, 2017, granting the
appellee, Karen Roach, an absolute divorce from the
appellant, Donnie Joe Roach (Joe). Joe appeals the decree and
raises three arguments for reversal. Karen cross-appeals,
arguing that the circuit court failed to divide commercial
real property that the couple owned during the marriage. We
dismiss the appeal and the cross-appeal without prejudice for
lack of a final order.
and Joe Roach were married on April 19, 1987, while they were
college students in Monroe, Louisiana. The couple remained in
Louisiana after graduation, whereupon Joe attended pharmacy
school and Karen worked as the morning disc jockey at a local
radio station. The couple moved to Jonesboro, Arkansas,
following Joe's graduation in 1991. Joe worked as a
pharmacist at various locations in Jonesboro and Blytheville.
Karen worked at a radio station in Arkansas until the
couple's first son, John, was born on May 17, 1992. Karen
thereafter remained at home to care for John and his three
October 2001, the couple purchased a pharmacy business that
they would later rename Family Care Pharmacy in Marked Tree,
Arkansas. Joe filled prescriptions and managed the business.
Karen worked part time as a pharmacy technician and
bookkeeper after the couple's youngest child began school
couple acquired additional property and business interests
during their marriage, including Action Medical, a
medical-supply store, in Truman, Arkansas. They also
purchased several properties, including the commercial
buildings where Family Care Pharmacy and Action Medical are
located, and several residential properties in Northeast
Arkansas and Memphis. One of the properties, located in
Jonesboro, was the marital residence when the couple
separated on June 10, 2012.
filed a complaint for divorce on August 10, 2012, alleging
general indignities and seeking custody of the couple's
two minor children. She also requested child support,
alimony, a division of the couple's substantial marital
property, and attorney's fees and costs. Joe
counterclaimed for divorce on September 10, 2012, also
alleging general indignities. He likewise sought custody of
the minor children, a division of the marital assets, child
support, and attorney's fees and costs.
October 9, 2012, the circuit court entered a temporary order
that awarded Karen custody of the minor children, child
support in the amount of $3, 000 a month, and spousal support
in the amount of $2, 000 a month. The court further ordered
that Joe shall have visitation with the children, and
"each party shall pay one-half of [the children's]
medical, dental, orthodontic, optical, and prescription
medical expenses" not covered by insurance. Finally, the
court ordered that Joe "shall receive all rental income
on all rental properties owned by the parties, pendente lite,
with an accounting of all income[.]"
filed a petition for contempt on March 20, 2015. In that
petition, Karen alleged that Joe "refused" to pay
child support in a timely manner; that he had "engaged
in harassing behavior directed toward [Karen]"; that he
had "gone outside of his visitation schedule"
without Karen's prior knowledge or consent; and that Joe
had "failed to provide an accounting of the rental
property income as ordered in the Temporary Order[.]"
contempt petition remains pending. The circuit court entered an
order requiring Joe to appear and show cause at the second
phase of the trial on April 22, 2015, and directed the
parties to submit posttrial briefs. Although Joe's
posttrial brief clearly identified the "contempt
issue" as one that must still be resolved, it does not
appear that the circuit court ultimately ruled on Karen's
petition for contempt. The circuit court does not address the
petition for contempt in the letter opinion entered on
January 27, 2016, in the decree entered on July 22, 2016,
from which this appeal is taken, or in any separate order.
the circuit court granted Karen a divorce "on the
grounds of adultery, general indignities, and eighteen (18)
months separation." Regarding the division of property,
the decree incorporated a settlement agreement in which Joe
and Karen agreed that Joe would retain Family Care Pharmacy
and Action Medical and pay Karen for her share of those
businesses. The court also ordered the sale of the
parties' rental properties, as well as their marital home
in Jonesboro, but made no ruling on the couple's
commercial real estate business. Finally, the decree ordered
the following regarding the assets in Joe and Karen's
banking and investment accounts:
The funds in all remaining accounts which have not
otherwise been addressed in this Divorce Decree shall be
placed in a bank trust account which cannot be accessed
without court order and which shall be frozen pending the
sale of the parties' properties. Upon the sale of the
rental properties, any outstanding mortgage debt shall be
paid from the bank trust ...