A Magazine man who had been listed as a fugitive was ordered held Friday on a pair of $250,000 bonds escaped from the Logan County Detention Center on Monday
Monday afternoon, deputies, assisted by area police officers and the Arkansas State Police, were conducting a search in and around Paris for Gary Topham, 49. He is 5-foot-11 and weighs 160 pounds, according to information obtained by monitoring Sheriff’s Department radio traffic. He is wearing back and white jail uniform pants and no shirt. The shirt and glasses worn by Topham were recovered by officers conducting the search. He is also reportedly cut and bleeding.
He was jailed in the Logan County Detention Center on Friday, Nov. 1 following an appearance in 15th Judicial District Circuit Court in Booneville. He was charged with failure to appear, fleeing, manufacture of meth or cocaine and possession of a controlled substance.
The escape took place between noon and 12:30 p.m. Monday.
Topham was held first on a failure to appear bond and secondly on new charges for which he was served after appearing in court Friday.
Fifteenth Judicial District Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Brian Mueller recommended the $250,000 for the failure to appear.
"In light of him being a fugitive, the state would ask for a bond in the amount of $250,000. He’s had a history, we’ve had to go to Missouri to pick him up before, and he’s been a fugitive this time for quite some time," said Mueller. "He’s got a new case and (law enforcement) is possibly working another case."
Public defender John Irwin did not object to the high bond.
"I can’t argue with the fact that law enforcement had to go to Missouri to get him and also that he’s been a fugitive for a couple of months, $250,000 is probably a reasonable bond under the circumstances," said Irwin.
Fifteenth Judicial District Circuit Judge Jerry Don Ramey noted that a bonding company representative requested until Friday to surrender Topham — it was the second appearance by the representative.
Asked to speak on his own behalf, Topham said he would like the court to know he surrendered himself instead.
Irwin asked if the bond would work on the failure to appear bond and the new case.
At first Ramey thought it would, but because the case is separate entity, the judge set a second $250,000 bond.
Topham’s next court date was a pre-trial appearance on Dec. 6 and a subsequent jury trial date on Dec. 20.
In May Topham was in court with two co-defendants and was apparently ready to take a plea deal when one, Connie Michelle Williams, 47, was found to be under the influence of THC and methamphetamine. Because Topham’s deal was contingent upon Williams’ the matters were continued.
In August Williams reappeared in court but Topham was not present and Irwin told the court he had learned that Topham had recently fled from an arrest attempt.
Topham was still a fugitive on Oct. 4 when his bondsman was granted until Friday to produce Topham.
In other matters Friday, Terry Luther was in court for three cases but each were continued.
Irwin told the court that Luther, who is being held in Sebastian County on kidnapping and other charges, a plea was tendered here, as was the case in Sebastian County, but his understanding as to the agreement and the paperwork were not in uniform.
Ramey asked if the South Logan cases could not be dealt with Friday but Irwin said every time that happens, the agreement here is used to enhance an agreement "there," presumably in Sebastian County — Logan and Sebastian County are not in the same judicial district.