Winter Webcast Series to be Hosted by Attorney General’s OfficeFri, Jan 12, 2018
LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge opened registration for a Winter Webcast Series of trainings on common senior scams, dating violence prevention, internet safety, identity theft, the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and prescription drug abuse and misuse prevention.
“This series of webcasts is an important tool for Arkansans to learn about the diverse resources provided by the Attorney General’s office,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Technology gives us a unique opportunity to connect with Arkansans across the state. Once again these trainings will be available to help individuals navigate the internet safely, recognize warning signs of dating violence, avoid common scams and identity theft and access public information through the Freedom of Information Act. To educate more people on the pain pill epidemic, I have added a program about the dangers of prescription drug abuse and misuse.”
From noon-1 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 17, participants can learn about scams that often target seniors, such as the Favorite Grandchild Scam, IRS Scam, Work-from-Home Scam, Door-to-Door Scam and many more. Scam artists are always finding new ways to try to trick consumers out of their hard earned money. This webcast will highlight some common scams, offer ways to spot the scam and what to do if you have been scammed.
On Wednesday, Jan. 24, a Break the Cycle training will be offered from noon-1 p.m. Break the Cycle is a leading national nonprofit organization that provides comprehensive dating abuse programs. Participants will learn about dating abuse, methods for intervention and how to implement a Healthy Relationships 101 session.
The internet safety training, or Digital You, will take place from noon-1 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 7. Digital You is a comprehensive, interactive educational program created by AT&T and Common Sense Media to offer tools, tips, apps, guidance and education for people of all ages and levels of online experience to learn more about how to have a safe and secure online experience. Rutledge adopted the curriculum in 2016.
A training to prevent being a victim of ID theft, which occurs when someone uses your personal information without your permission to commit fraud or other crimes, most commonly to obtain access to credit in your name, will be offered on from noon-1 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 14.
A FOIA webcast covering public records and meetings will be available from 10 a.m.-noon on Wednesday, Feb. 28.
And the Prescription for Life webcast brings a first-in-the-nation curriculum to Arkansas high school students. The digital platform addresses the dangers of prescription drug misuse and how to prevent abuse. The program is free to high schools across Arkansas. The webcast will be available from noon-1 p.m. on Wednesday, March 7.
The online trainings are free and open to the public. Registration for each one can be found at ArkansasAG.gov.
Rutledge Announces Arrest of Faulkner County Man for Crimes Involving ChildrenTue, Jan 9, 2018
LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today announced the arrest of Steven Wayne Bramlett, of Conway, on 30 counts of distributing, possessing or viewing matter depicting sexually explicit conduct involving a child, a Class C felony.
Bramlett, 56, was arrested by the Attorney General’s office Cyber Crimes Unit. He is being held in the Faulkner County Detention Center on $1 million bond.
Special agents in the Attorney General’s office began investigating Bramlett after agents determined that someone using a computer at Bramlett’s address downloaded sexually explicit material involving children.
Bramlett was convicted in 1979 of attempted capital murder and was sentenced to life in prison. In 2015, the Arkansas Supreme Court overturned his sentence because he was 17 at the time of his offense. He was resentenced and released in February 2016.
Rutledge Applauds the Administration’s Rural Prosperity Task Force ReportMon, Jan 8, 2018
Says, ‘This report, if fully implemented, will not only change rural America, but it will empower these communities for generations’
LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge applauds the recommendations made by President Donald J. Trump’s Rural Prosperity Task Force. The inter-agency task force was chaired by Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue with the responsibility of establishing a vision and action plan to guide a better rural America into the future.
“Being raised on a cattle ranch in rural Independence County provided me a strong work ethic, an appreciation for the land and an understanding of needs in rural communities,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Many of the issues addressed in the task force report are the same concerns brought forward by Arkansans as I have traveled the state holding roundtable events over the last three years, including the more than 375 farmers I met with in 2016. This comprehensive effort creates the framework that will assist Arkansas farmers, ranchers, foresters, producers and rural communities who have felt neglected and deserve access to high-speed internet, affordable health care, workforce development and regulatory relief. This report, if fully implemented, will not only change rural America, but it will empower these communities for generations.”
The report identified five key factors to target legislative, regulatory and policy changes. They include connectivity, quality of life improvement, support for rural workforce, technological innovation and economic development.
Rutledge Part of $45 Million Settlement with PHH Mortgage CorporationFri, Jan 5, 2018
Says, ‘agreement sets servicing standards that PHH must provide to protect consumers’
LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge announced today that she, along with attorneys general from 48 other states and the District of Columbia and more than 40 state mortgage regulators have reached a $45 million settlement with New Jersey-based mortgage lender and servicer PHH Mortgage Corporation.
The settlement resolves allegations that PHH, the nation’s ninth largest non-bank residential mortgage originator and servicer, improperly serviced mortgage loans from January 1, 2009 through December 31, 2012.
The agreement requires PHH to follow comprehensive mortgage servicing standards, conduct audits and provide audit results to a committee of states.
“This agreement sets servicing standards that PHH must provide to protect consumers going forward,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “This settlement holds PHH accountable for failing to timely apply payments, maintain accurate account statements, threatening foreclosure and other deceptive and unfair activities conducted by the business.”
The settlement includes $30.4 million in payments to borrowers who were foreclosed upon or referred to foreclosure. Borrowers who were subjected to PHH foreclosures during the eligible period will qualify for a minimum $840 payment, and borrowers who faced foreclosures that PHH initiated during the eligible period, but did not lose their home, are eligible to receive at least $285.
Approximately 520 Arkansas borrowers are eligible for compensation under the settlement. A settlement administrator will contact eligible recipients at a later date.
The settlement also includes nearly $160,000 to the Arkansas Securities Department for violations of certain State regulations. The settlement does not release PHH from liability for any conduct that may have occurred since 2013.
Rutledge Holds 1st Roundtable of 2018Thu, Jan 4, 2018
MENA – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today kicked off the first Rutledge Roundtables of 2018 with community leaders in Polk and Scott counties. This marks the fourth consecutive year Attorney General Rutledge will visit all 75 counties to hear directly from Arkansans about their concerns and issues impacting their county.
“Each year I have built stronger relationships with communities across Arkansas,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Starting a conversation with various business, education, agriculture, faith-based and community leaders in each county gives me a better understanding of what I can do as Attorney General to best serve and assist Arkansans.”
Rutledge has hosted 232 roundtables with more than 2,200 participants since taking office in 2015.
Rutledge Sets January Mobile Office LocationsWed, Jan 3, 2018
LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today announced mobile office locations for January.
Attorney General Rutledge created the mobile office initiative during her first year in office to make the office accessible to everyone, particularly to those who live outside the capital city. Office hours were held in all 75 counties in 2015, 2016 and 2017 and assisted nearly 1,000 Arkansans last year.
Rutledge believes in face-to-face conversations. The Attorney General Mobile Offices assist constituents with consumer related issues in filing consumer complaints against scam artists as well as answering questions about the office and the other services it offers to constituents.
This year, the Cooperative Extension Service will be on hand at each mobile office to also provide information on the services they provide statewide.
Rutledge continues her partnership with local law enforcement across Arkansas to offer prescription drug take back boxes at each mobile office. Law enforcement will be at all mobile offices to handle a secure box and properly dispose of the prescriptions collected. Rutledge encourages Arkansans to bring their old, unused or expired prescription medications to an upcoming mobile office.
For more information about services provided by the Attorney General’s office, visit ArkansasAG.gov or call (501) 682-2007. Rutledge can also be found on Facebook at facebook.com/AGLeslieRutledge and on Twitter at twitter.com/AGRutledge.
The upcoming mobile office schedule is below:
Tuesday, January 9
9:30 – 11 a.m.
Grant County Cooperative Extension Service
202 West Pine Street
Sheridan, AR 72150
Thursday, January 11
10 to 11:30 a.m.
Perryville Senior Adult Center
107 North Magnolia Street
Perryville, AR 72126
Thursday, January 18
10:30 a.m. to noon
TC Vaughan Senior Adult Center
706 North Division Street
Morrilton, AR 72110
Tuesday, January 23
10 to 11:30 a.m.
White County Cooperative Extension Service
411 North Spruce
Searcy, AR 72143
Thursday, January 25
10 to 11:30 a.m.
Hamburg Senior Center
1406 North Main Street
Hamburg, AR 71646
Tuesday, January 30
10 to 11:30 a.m.
Des Arc Senior Center
1103 Main Street
Des Arc, AR 72040