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Rutledge Statement on Departure of Communications Director Judd Deere to the White House

Rutledge Statement on Departure of Communications Director Judd Deere to the White House

Fri, Nov 3, 2017

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge announced today that Communications Director Judd Deere would be stepping down on Nov. 17 after accepting a job at the White House to become the Director of State & Local Communications.

“I am thrilled that Judd will be able to use his talent and expertise to communicate to millions of Americans on behalf of the White House,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “Since becoming my Communications Director in December of 2014, Judd has taken our communications strategy to the next level by working diligently to make sure Arkansans are aware of the services of the office and what is being done on their behalf to protect them from scams, criminals and an overreaching federal government. Judd has developed strong relationships with members of the media locally and nationally, something I know will serve him well in his new role. While I will miss his expertise and daily counsel, I am confident he will do an exceptional job serving the President of the United States in the years ahead, and I wish him nothing but the best.”

“Any new opportunity is exciting but especially one at the White House, and one I am honored to accept,” said Judd Deere. “Working alongside talented individuals like Hope Hicks, Sarah Huckabee Sanders and Mercedes Schlapp, I am looking forward to building on the team’s success of communicating the President’s message at the state and local level. The people of Arkansas are fortunate to have Leslie Rutledge as their attorney general. Everything she does is about doing what is right for Arkansans and nobody is going to out-work her. General Rutledge has been my boss for three years, but also my friend and mentor. I will miss working with her and the exceptional team at the Attorney General’s office daily, as well as the best local reporters in the country right here in Arkansas.”

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Rutledge Announces Arrest of Helena-West Helena Man for Medicaid Fraud
Attorney General, Press Association Publish 18th Edition of Arkansas Freedom of Information Handbook

Attorney General, Press Association Publish 18th Edition of Arkansas Freedom of Information Handbook

Thu, Nov 2, 2017

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge and the Arkansas Press Association have published the 18th edition of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) Handbook, which is now available online and in print.

“This edition of the Arkansas Freedom of Information Act Handbook updates changes made to the law by the General Assembly in 2017,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “I take great pride in knowing that the Arkansas FOIA is one of the most comprehensive at fostering open government in the country. I am committed to educating government officials, journalists and all Arkansans about the law to ensure our citizens have access to public information.”

"The FOIA Handbook has for many years been a handy reference for Arkansas's elected and appointed officials and for custodians of public records who have responsibilities under the state's Freedom of Information Act," said Tom Larimer, executive director of the Arkansas Press Association. "We are happy to again partner with the Office of the Arkansas Attorney General in producing this guide to the FOIA, and in promoting transparency in government at all levels in Arkansas."

The Arkansas Freedom of Information Act was enacted by the General Assembly in 1967 after a strong push from a coalition of citizens and journalists and with the support of then-Gov. Winthrop Rockefeller. The bill passed the House and Senate without a dissenting vote. Gov. Rockefeller later reflected that passage of the FOIA was one of the most significant achievements of his time in office.

Print copies of the handbook are available upon request from the Attorney General’s office by calling (501) 682-2007, and electronic copies of the handbook are available at ArkansasAG.gov and at ArkansasPress.org.

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Rutledge Announces Arrest of another Mississippi Woman for Fraud

Rutledge Announces Arrest of another Mississippi Woman for Fraud

Tue, Oct 31, 2017

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today announced the arrest of another Mississippi woman.

Clotee Downs, 79, of Clarksdale, Mississippi was arrested by the Clarksdale Police Department on two counts of health care fraud, Class B felonies, and two counts of Medicaid fraud, Class C felonies.

Downs’ arrest follows the apprehension of Pearlie Bailey, 63, of Hollandale, Mississippi, Charline Brandon, 61, of Cleveland, Mississippi and Debra Stewart, 59, of Helena.

The four are accused of fraudulently billing for services not rendered and for providing false information for the purpose of requesting payment from a health plan, totaling almost $290,000 from March 2011 to January 2017. This case was referred to the Arkansas Attorney General’s office by the Mississippi Medicaid Fraud Control Unit and is part of an ongoing investigation with the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Office of Inspector General.

Medicaid fraud occurs when providers use the Medicaid program to obtain money to which they are not entitled. To report Medicaid fraud or abuse or neglect in residential care facilities, contact the Attorney General’s Medicaid fraud hotline at (866) 810-0016 or oag@arkansasag.gov.

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Attorney General’s Office has distributed more than 103,000 Laura’s Cards

Attorney General’s Office has distributed more than 103,000 Laura’s Cards

Tue, Oct 31, 2017

Says, ‘I am grateful to the sheriffs’ offices, police departments, advocacy groups and shelters that are working hand-in-hand with my office to continue getting Laura’s Cards into the hands of the men and women who need them’

LITTLE ROCK – To mark the final day of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge has announced that since the unveiling of Laura’s Card in February of 2016, 103,800 have been distributed in both English and Spanish.

“The almost-104,000 cards that have been distributed represent far more than just words on paper,” said Attorney General Rutledge. “It brings hope. It reminds men or women living in dangerous situations that God has a better plan for their lives. I am grateful to the sheriffs’ offices, police departments, advocacy groups and shelters that are working hand-in-hand with my office to continue getting Laura’s Cards into the hands of the men and women who need them.”

Laura’s Card was created through legislation sponsored by Rep. Charlotte Douglas (R-Alma) in the 2015 legislative session after many conversations with Laura Webb of Cabot. Webb is a survivor of domestic violence, but when she was victimized she did not know where to turn and voiced her concerns to Rep. Douglas about the need to provide resources to those in abusive situations. Under Act 873, law enforcement officers must provide a resource information card to assist victims of crime and their families.

Laura’s Card includes 24-hour crisis lines, a place for law enforcement and local shelter or service provider to include contact information, a list of victim’s rights, information about the Crime Victims Reparations Board and a website that has been created with links to numerous resources available across the state. The website, LaurasCard.ar.gov, is a clearinghouse of resources for law enforcement, service providers and victims.

In addition to working with Rep. Douglas, Webb and the Arkansas Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Rutledge also received input to help craft Laura’s Card from the Arkansas Association of Chiefs of Police; Arkansas Coalition Against Sexual Assault; Arkansas Commission on Child Abuse, Rape and Domestic Violence; Arkansas Crime Information Center; Arkansas Crime Victims Reparations Board; Arkansas Sheriffs’ Association; Arkansas State Police; Criminal Justice Institute and the Office of the Prosecutor Coordinator.

In July of 2016, Rutledge announced that the Spanish version of the card would also be provided and available online for download.

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Rutledge Announces Mobile Office Locations for November

Rutledge Announces Mobile Office Locations for November

Mon, Oct 30, 2017

LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge today announced mobile office locations for November.

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. In both 2015 and 2016, office hours were held in all 75 counties assisting nearly 1,300 Arkansans.

The Attorney General Mobile Offices assist constituents with consumer related issues in filing consumer complaints against scam artists. Staff will also be available to answer questions about the office and the other services it offers to constituents. Rutledge believes there is no issue too small for her staff to have a face-to-face conversation.

Rutledge continues her partnership that began in 2016 with local law enforcement across the State to offer prescription drug take back boxes. 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:

Miller County

Thursday, Nov. 2

10:30 a.m. – noon

Miller County Senior Center

1007 Jefferson Ave.

Texarkana, AR 71854

Scott County

Tuesday, Nov. 7

10 – 11 a.m.

Scott County Library

141 W. 2nd St.

Waldron, AR 72958

Marion County

Tuesday, Nov. 14

10 – 11:30 a.m.

Marion County Senior Activity & Wellness Center

5966 Highway 202 East

Flippin, AR 72634

Craighead County

Thursday, Nov. 16

9:30 – 11 a.m.

St. Bernards Senior Life Center

700 E. Washington Ave.

Jonesboro, AR 72401

St. Francis County

Tuesday, Nov. 28

10 – 11:30 a.m.

Woodruff Electric Cooperative Corporation

3201 Highway 1 North

Forrest City, AR 72335

Hot Spring County

Thursday, Nov. 30

9:30 – 11 a.m.

Malvern Senior Activity Center

1800 W. Moline St.

Malvern, AR 72104

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