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  • Writer's pictureDennis McCaslin

Accused Fort Smith murderer had five prior felony convictions since 2013

The Fort Smith man arrested by Fort Smith police Thursday night and charged with murder in a homicide that occurred on Fort Smith's north side should be a poster boy for what is wrong with our criminal justice system.

Christopher Wayne Duren, 38, of Fort Smith was arrested for first-degree murder and taken to the Sebastian County Adult Detention Center after being developed in a case in which a "suspicious death occurred near the corner of North 12th and G Street.

Prior to his arrest on Thursday, Duren had five felony convictions since 2013 resulting in a 128-months of imposed sentences.

Yet, he walked the street as a free man less than a year after being sentenced to 24-months with 48 additional suspended in October 2019 on paraphernalia felony charges.

Also, in 2019, Duren was sentenced to 60 months for drug and paraphernalia charges in February for a 2018 drug arrest. From the day he was sentenced to the five years to the day of his next arrest was a approximately two weeks.

He also was arrested in September 2019 for Carrying a Weapon (three counts) and Felony Failure to Appear. That resulted in being transferred to the Arkansas Department of Corrections on November 11.

All that after he was allowed to post bond in April of 2019 for a Felony Petition to Revoke.

In addition,, he was served with an order of protection in 2017 against a female, and had 2013 convictions for Commercial Burglary/Theft of property and Criminal Trespass in 2013.

The Fort Smith Police Department has yet to identify the victim in this case. Hopefully they will do so before Duren gets another free pass.

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