Harp pleads guilty to theft charges

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    Judge holding gavel in courtroom

    A Hot Springs man plead guilty to a host of charges related to a roadside incident last December involving an elderly woman who stopped to offer assistance with his car that appeared to be broken down.
    According to documents provided by the Montgomery County Clerk’s Office, Douglas Harp, age 37 of Hot Springs, plead guilty to breaking or entering, a class D felony, theft of property, a class D felony, and possession of drug paraphernalia, a class A misdemeanor. He also plead guilty to one count of failure to appear, a class C felony.
    The first three charges were the result of an incident that happened December 27 of last year. According to police reports officers responded to calls that a man who was possibly intoxicated was trying to flag down traffic on Hwy 70 near the Hot Spring County line.
    When the deputies arrived on scene they found Amy Grisham and Maria Cogburn. They claimed the car they were riding in, owned by Cogburn, had broken down and that they were waiting Douglas Harp to return from Glenwood with a battery.
    Before the deputies left the scene, they were informed of a call from an elderly woman who had claimed she had stopped to help the trio and later discovered items missing from her purse.
    Deputies questioned Cogburn, who stated that she had not entered the woman’s car, but Grisham had.
    The officers received consent from Cogburn to search her car. During the search they allegedly found three syringes in the back seat. Officer Chance Reid of the Glenwood Police Department was called for assistance. He took Harp into custody and reported that Harp had allegedly purchased a cellphone at Family Dollar Store in Glenwood with the victim’s credit card.
    He was later charged with failure to appear after missing a courr appearance.
    Harp’s plea was in response to a plea packet offered by the prosecuting attorney’s office. He was sentenced to 24 months in the Arkansas Department of Corrections with a judicial transfer to a community punishment center. There was an additional suspended imposition of sentence for 48 months. He was also ordered to pay a $1,000 fine and $603.20 in court cost and fees.