Thursday, November 8, 2018
A Hot Springs woman with 12 prior convictions for driving while intoxicated pleaded guilty Monday in Garland County Circuit Court to a felony charge of DWI, fifth offense, from a March 26 arrest and was sentenced to six years in prison.
Patricia Ann Clanton, 56, who has remained in custody since a suspended sentence from a previous conviction was revoked on June 4, was set to stand trial Tuesday and could have faced up to 20 years in prison. She was sentenced to 15 years in prison, with nine years suspended, fined $3,500 and ordered to pay $520 in court costs.
Deputy Prosecutor Trent Daniels said part of her sentence included her agreeing to a warrantless search waiver, which gives authorities the right to search her and her vehicle if stopped or do home checks on her residence. She must also complete a substance abuse treatment program.
Daniels noted Clanton also has another DWI arrest case, sixth offense, pending in Grant County and could face up to 18 years in prison there "depending on what they decide to do."
According to the affidavit on Clanton's March 26 arrest, shortly before 1 a.m., Garland County sheriff's Deputy Richard Garrett was on patrol when he saw a Chevrolet Monte Carlo pull into the parking lot of Buddy Bean Lumber Co., 3940 Malvern Ave., and stopped to check on it.
He made contact with the driver, identified as Clanton, and a female passenger, 49, as Cpl. Jon Lane arrived to assist. Lane noted a strong odor of intoxicants coming from the vehicle, so they had the occupants get out. Clanton claimed she pulled over because her friend was having medical problems.
Lane attempted to administer field sobriety tests on Clanton, but she refused to cooperate. Clanton reportedly had bloodshot eyes, a strong odor of intoxicants on her person, slurred speech and was unsteady on her feet.
Clanton was reportedly "very belligerent" and wouldn't follow instructions. She did submit to a portable breathalyzer test, which registered her blood alcohol content at 0.179 percent, more than twice the legal limit.
Clanton was previously convicted of DWI on Aug. 21, 1994, in Pine Bluff; on May 9, 1999, in Hot Springs; on Feb. 9, 2002, in Hot Springs; on June 22, 2002, in Rockport; on June 15, 2004, in Garland County Circuit Court; on Sept. 23, 2005, in Hot Springs; on April 4, 2008, in Hot Springs; on Oct. 10, 2011, in Pine Bluff; on Jan. 20, 2012, in Pine Bluff; on April 1, 2012, in Hot Springs; and on April 5, 2014, in Grant County, and on Jan. 12, 2016, in Garland County.
On the 2016 conviction, Clanton was sentenced to 10 years in prison, with eight years suspended, fined $900 and ordered to pay $340 in court costs.
On May 21, prosecutors filed a motion to revoke her suspended sentence noting she violated the conditions of her sentence when she was arrested again for DWI and she also failed to make regular payments toward her fine and court costs.
A warrant for her arrest that was issued on May 22 was served in open court during her arraignment in circuit court on June 4. Clanton had remained in custody since then on zero bond.Local on 11/08/2018
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