Time served is sentence for 10-time DWI offender Sheila Blair
Benton District Court Judge Mike Robinson has sentenced 48-year-old Sheila Blair to two days in jail for violating terms of her parole.
Since 1995, Blair has racked up a total of 10 DWI arrests and a slew of various charges, including endangering the welfare of minor.
In conjunction with Blair's latest arrest by Bryant police on Monday for public intoxication and disorderly conduct, she is scheduled to appear in Bryant District Court on Nov. 7.
Rhonda Sharp, spokesperson for the Arkansas Department of Community Correction, told The Saline Courier that Blair has been on parole since November of 2010 and said the parole ends on Aug. 24, 2017.
Blair has made headlines in the Saline Courier numerous times since 1995. In 2008 former state representatives and Saline County Prosecuting Attorney Ken Casady held a press conference in reaction to Blair's early release from prison; she had served little more than a year on a 10-year sentence for DWI.
The conference was part of an effort to make felony DWI offenders exempt from early prison release. Blair had been released under the state emergency powers act that permits the release of numerous, nonviolent criminals because of prison crowding.
Fourteen months after her release from prison, due to an Aug. 16, 2009, arrest in Bryant and violating parolee terms, Blair was subject to a parole board hearing. She presented a plea bargain to Saline County Judge Bobby McCallister for filing a false police report in which she accused a man of rape. In that report, it was discovered that alcohol was consumed by Blair and that she pointed a 0.45-caliber pistol at her then-boyfriend. The victim said that an intoxicated Blair threatened to kill him and pointed the gun at him, "but she couldn't get the safety off."
Officers reported that after finding Blair hiding under a bush in the backyard of the home, she was forcibly taken into custody. While at Saline Memorial Hospital, Blair accused the boyfriend of raping her. She had told officers that her ribs were broken.
Blair was later convicted of falsifying a police report for a rape claim and sentenced to six months in prison by a parole board for violating terms of her parole. Saline County Judge Bobby McCallister also sentenced Blair to six years in the Arkansas Department of Correction for filing the false police report.
Since her release from prison on those convictions, Blair has been on parole.
On Monday, she allegedly violated those terms with her arrest in Bryant. Officer Matthew Boyd said in a report that at 12:15 a.m. on Monday, he noticed a vehicle parked in the middle of the Reynolds Road and West Commerce Drive. Boyd said the vehicle remained parked for nearly two minutes before the driver left and then failed to signal a left turn, driving in the opposite lane of traffic for 50 feet.
During the traffic stop at the Spring Road Valero gas station, Boyd said the driver "was found not to have consumed any alcoholic beverages" and was released without charges. However, Boyd reported that he noticed the passenger, Blair, was "highly intoxicated."
Boyd said Blair was "slurring her speech so bad that I could barely understand her" and that she had a "hard time holding her head up, was slumped forward in her seat and smelled strongly of the odor of intoxicants."
While speaking with the driver outside the vehicle, Boyd, looking through the back glass, said he saw Blair "pick up a beer bottle from the rear seat and consume a large amount of the contents from the beer bottle."
Sgt. Nick Ramsey, also at the scene, reportedly asked Blair what she was doing, but she did not respond.
Boyd said when Blair was assisted out of the vehicle "she was yelling about not wanting to exit the vehicle" and he noticed that she "could barely stand unassisted."
In a twist, due to state laws, if Blair gets arrested and convicted again for DWI, despite a lengthy criminal history, it will be counted as DWI first offense. State law reads that a fourth offense DWI is a felony, but it has to be within five years. Blair's last DWI offense was in April of 2007, which is now past the five-year mark.
"I am an alcoholic and in recovery," Blair said during a parole hearing in 2009.
That statement was made after several witnesses confirmed she had been seen drinking in public and after two undercover officers testified that she was found intoxicated outside a local establishment.
Previously, Blair had emphatically denied drinking since her parole in 2008.
"I had a couple of beers with friends, but I shouldn't have gone in and tried to act like normal people. I slipped up and made a mistake," Blair added during the 2009 parole hearing.
Since May 2, 1995, Blair not only has incurred 10 DWI convictions, she was also convicted of running a stop sign; several driving on suspended driver's license charges; disorderly conduct; criminal mischief; several drinking in public charges; careless and prohibited driving; two separate charges of leaving the scene of an accident with personal injury; endangering the welfare of a minor; assault in the third degree; refusal to submit to a blood-alcohol test; no seat belt; improper lane use; animal control; fleeing in vehicle; and failure to appear.