LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Gov. Asa Hutchinson held a briefing Monday to discuss efforts the state is taking to reduce crime.

Hutchinson started by addressing efforts the state is taking as crime continues throughout the state. He talked about the Intensive Supervision Program. The program is for individuals who have been released from prison on parole looking to get a second start in life.

Hutchinson added that he set aside $75 million prison expansion in the state to relieve the pressure on the local and county jails. From January to August, Hutchinson said that there has been a 30% reduction in the county jail backup.

He also noted that the state court system was backed up due to COVID-19. The state has set aside $1 million of reserve funds for prosecutor’s offices and public defenders to help move cases forward. The funds allowed the state to hire 21 deputy prosecuting attorneys. Hutchinson said he has asked the general assembly to approved $4.5 million each for state prosecutors and public defenders.

Hutchinson said he has also asked the general assembly to allocate $3 million for an additional crisis stabilization center in south Arkansas. He explained that the centers are to provide mental health care for those released from prison.

He also addressed an incident resulting in the suspension of two deputies and a police officer in Crawford County.

“That is reprehensible conduct in which a suspect is beat in that fashion.”

Gov. Asa Hutchinson on the Crawford County arrest video

The Crawford County Sheriff’s Office released the names of the law enforcement officers seen in a viral arrest video appearing beat a man. The Arkansas State Police and federal authorities are currently investigating the incident. 

A live stream of the briefing is available in the video player above.