Friday, March 17, 2017

WARD 2 DIRECTOR KEN RICHARDSON FINALLY SHOWS UP FOR A VOTING MEETING - BUT HE SNEAKS OUT EARLY PROVIDING A HUMOROUS ENDING TO THE BOARD MEETING

DIRECTOR RICHARDSON MAKES A RARE APPEARANCE AT A VOTING MEETING, WITH A HUGE BUMP IN THE MIDDLE OF HIS FOREHEAD



We previously posted that the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette ran a story recently about Ken Richardson, the Ward 2 Board member, having missed almost half of the city board of director meetings since January 2016 where voting occurred.


This creates serious concerns about his ability to effectively represent his ward and impacts the ability of the board to take care of business for all citizens of the city.

Due to recent coverage of his many absences or to the fact that he had nothing better to do, Ken made a rare appearance this past Tuesday and actually showed up for a board meeting to vote on important issues - with a big bump and cut smack dab in the middle of his forehead.

Did Ken have a little too much to drink again and fall flat on his face?  Did someone give him a good smack with a frying pan?  Did flashing lights trigger a seizure and he fell? Your guess is as good as ours.

A few minutes before the meeting was was over, Richardson is sitting in his chair talking with Vice-Mayor Kathy Webb.


Then he quietly left the meeting during the Citizen Communication portion of the meeting.



At the end of Citizen Communication's,  Mayor Mark Stodola, unaware that Ken booked out early, stated, "Director Richardson, ahhh, do I hear a motion to adjourn from you?" Hearing no response, Mayor Stodola looks over to where Richardson had been seated and notices he is gone and then says, "Oh, he's not here anymore!" and loud laughter erupts. Then Mayor Stodola spreads out his arms and exclaims, "He vanished on me!" 


video

Who knew that a Little Rock Board of Director meeting could provide so much entertainment? 

Our previous post pointed out the fact that Richardson has a history of drinking and driving and he has admitted to having an issue with liquor. According to some accounts he also suffers from seizures for which he takes medication.

But his admission to being a dangerous drunk driver and driving when his license was suspended is just the tip of the iceberg.

Our research into Richardson's legal issues uncovered a little known matters.  

Back in 1986, Richardson was charged with burglary in San Jose, California.  Apparently he hotfooted it from the land of fruits and nuts and sought refuge from the law back in Little Rock.

According to the San Jose County Criminal Court Clerk, they issued a fugitive arrest warrant for Richardson, but he never stood trial for the criminal offense.

We found that he was actually arrested on the fugitive warrant once he returned to Little Rock, but due to the passage of time there are few records of what transpired once he was arrested here on the California fugitive warrant.




Richardson refused to answer questions we posed to him about the disposition of the criminal charges from California.

We found some information about Richardson's time in California in an article the Arkansas Times published about gang activity in Little Rock.





Apparently Richardson left California due to the burglary charges and came back to Little Rock and subsequently obtained a job with the city.  As previously stated, Richardson was never in court for the charges as California couldn't find him.

Richardson was a big player in getting that monstrosity of a building on 12th Street for LRPD and retail businesses.   





It opened in 2014 and the retail space on the ground floor still sits empty.


The city has paid a consultant a huge fee to help fill the empty space with tenants and as of this date none have been identified. 

There have also been questions about the non-profit agency he worked for, New Futures for Youth -  now defunct, that received thousands in tax dollars and  grants and any influence he might have exerted to receive funds for it from the City of Little Rock.From 2010 through 2016 the City paid $1,403,008.36 to New Futures for Youth.

Richardson needs to man up and answer questions we posed to him.  The citizens of Little Rock have the right to know the truth about city officials.