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By E’Lyse Golden, Investigative Reporter
On December 18 around 1:40am, Deputy Blunkall of the Garland County Sherriff’s Department was patrolling the area of Highway 5 and Highway 7 Junction when he saw a gray SUV parked in the Shell gas station parking lot with the headlights on. The parolee driver tried to flee.
Blunkall turned into the parking lot opposite of the Shell station to check the status of the vehicle. The vehicle turned out of the parking lot at a high speed onto Park Avenue towards Rockdale Road.
Blunkall followed the vehicle and attempted to catch up to it. He followed the vehicle onto Rockdale Road and then to Rockdale Court.
Blunkall arrived at the dead end on Rockdale Court and saw the SUV on the left-hand side of the road and Christian Bice, 26, of W Saint Louis Street in Hot Springs, walking back up the road away from the vehicle talking on the phone.
The vehicle was parked along a fence with tire marks leading towards the fence. The fence was broken at the base with damage to some of the fence posts.
Bice was on parole at the time with a search waiver on file. Blunkall asked if he had anything illegal in the vehicle and Bice directed his attention to a large pile of mail with different addresses around Garland County in the floorboard of the front passenger seat hidden under a jacket.
Blunkall also found several checks made out to different people, and several different debit and credit cards with other peoples’ names on them.
A fake Redbull can was found close by the vehicle containing methamphetamine.
Bice told Blunkall that he had thrown the keys to the vehicle on the opposite side of the road from the vehicle and Blunkall found them there.
Bice was arrested and transported to the Garland County Detention Center.
Bice said he was trying to quit using methamphetamine. He also said Blunkall was the only one that had ever caught him after he ran.
Bice is charged with driving on a suspended license, fleeing on foot, possession of a controlled substance less than 2 grams, driving a vehicle with no registration or expired tags, no liability insurance, careless and prohibited driving, and an unsafe vehicle violation.
Bice entered a plea of not guilty on December 18 and has a felony review scheduled for January 13, 2020.