Some call for southwest Arkansas prosecuting attorney to step down

She and others are targets of a class-action lawsuit involving child abuse case
Published: Feb. 28, 2023 at 9:06 PM CST
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LITTLE RIVER COUNTY, Ark. (KSLA) - In 2022, an Arkansas man was convicted of abusing multiple children over a 20-year period. Although he’s in prison, some say more is needed to get justice for the victims and the community.

A jar on display outside the Little River County Courthouse is filled with 466 marbles.

“Which represent cases that I alone worked and have seen at the advocacy center,” said Patsy DeHart, a former child abuse investigator for the Miller County Sheriff’s Office and Arkansas State Police.

DeHart and others held a small demonstration at the courthouse Tuesday, Feb. 28, calling for Jana Bradford to step down. She’s the elected prosecuting attorney for Arkansas’ 9th Judicial District West, which includes Little River, Sevier, Howard and Pike counties.

“I believe Jana Bradford should step down as prosecuting attorney. We as adults need to make sure that children are safe whether they are around family or anybody else,” DeHart said.

DeHart said she started this campaign after finding out that Bradford filed a petition in 2018 to remove Bradford’s uncle Barry Walker from the sex offender registry. Walker is serving life in prison for multiple abuse charges involving a juvenile.

“You don’t get away raping this many girls without someone running interference for you or helping you out,” Texarkana attorney David Carter said.

Carter has filed a class-action lawsuit against Walker and others, including Bradford.

“She is named not in her capacity as a prosecutor, but because she is in a group of individuals who either knew about this abuse or certainly should have and failed to report it,” said Carter.

KSLA reached out to Bradford but were told due to pending litigation, she could not comment at this time.

No court date has been set.