July 23, 2008 Edition

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Imboden man arrested
after his wife dies

Gretchen Hunt

An Imboden man remains in custody in the Lawernce County Jail after being charged with first-degree murder.

Michael Hodges, 43, of Imboden was arrested in connection with the death of his wife, Sherri Hodges, 39, who died on July 12.

The 911 center received a call that night at 10:16 from Hodges that his wife was unresponsive.

Sheriff Dan Ellison said when the ambulance arrived at the home, located at 201 North Main in Imboden, at 10:21 p.m., personnel requested deputies because of a disorderly male, who was later identified as Hodges.

Deputy Andrew Turner responded to the call, and contacted Lt. Stan Finley after arriving at the home. Deputy Lonnie Cline assisted at the scene, as well.

A search warrant was obtained by Finley, lead investigator on the case, at 3:30 a.m. on Sunday.

The sheriff said the investigation has been a department-wide priority.

"All deputies at one point or another have assisted," he said. "We also called in state investigators."

Special Agent Wendell Jines and Sgt. Brant Tosh with the Arkansas State Police assisted with the investigation.

Ellison said evidence gathered and witness testimony, along with an autopsy that revealed extensive internal injuries, led to an arrest warrant being issued on July 15 for first-degree murder. Ellison said the arrest warrant was served by Dep. Lonnie Cline that evening around 5:30.

Lt. Finley and several others from the LCSD were also on the scene when the warrant was served, as were deputies from Randolph County. Ellison said the arrest was made without incident.

Finley said the department is continuing to investigate the incident.

A bond hearing was held July 16 with the bond set at $500,000 by District Judge Larry Hayes. A circuit court date has been set for Aug. 25.

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