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Stephen R. Whaples
Stephen R. Whaples

     The Sheriff's Office this afternoon arrested a well known fugitive from justice, 31 year old STEPHEN RICHARD WHAPLES of Mountain Home, after deputies encountered him at a residence on Baxter CR 27 in the rural Mountain Home area.

      Deputies went to a residence on Baxter CR 27 to try and contact a different suspect on an investigation into a separate and unrelated Game and Fish violation.   When deputies arrived at the residence at approximately 12:30 PM, they encountered a man in the yard that they recognized as being STEPHEN WHAPLES, who had outstanding no bond felony warrants for failure to appear in court.  Deputies quickly took action to arrest WHAPLES, and he was taken into custody without incident.  The suspect in the unrelated Game and Fish violation was not found there.

     Deputies searched WHAPLES after his arrest.  During the search, they found approximately 12.8 grams of methamphetamine, a small amount of marijuana, and syringes on his person.  These items were seized and taken into evidence.

     STEPHEN WHAPLES was then transported to the Baxter County Detention Center and was booked on charges of:

Possession of Controlled Substance (methamphetamine) with Purpose of Delivery - Felony
Possession of Drug Paraphernalia (2 counts) - Felonies
Failure to Appear in Court (2 counts) - Outstanding Felony Warrants
Habitual Offender - Penalty Enhancement

     WHAPLES has a no bond hold on the failure to appear warrants and has been given a bond of $50,000 on the new drug charges.  He will appear before the Circuit Court to answer on December 17th.  Records indicate that WHAPLES has been booked into the Baxter County Detention Center a total of 13 times since 2011 on more than 70 separate charges.  These include 4 counts of Failing to Appear in Court as ordered and 5 counts of Fleeing from police.

/s/ John F. Montgomery,
Baxter County Sheriff