• Dennis McCaslin

Man with multiple felonies out of Sebastian County arrested on statutory rape charge

Thomas William Phillips III

A Fort Smith man who has been a frequent guest of the Arkansas Department of Corrections for the past eighteen years and has been convicted of a number of felonies in the 12th Circuit Court is back in jail facing a $50,000 legally sufficient bond for Rape of an individual under the age of fourteen.

Thomas William Phillips, 34, of Fort Smith was booked into the Sebastian County Detention Center at 3:20 p.m. on Tuesday and charged with the Class Y Felony within three hours of his incarceration.

Any person who pleads guilty or nolo contendere to or is found guilty of rape involving a victim who is less than fourteen years of age in Arkansas faces a minimum term of imprisonment of twenty-five years.

Phillips was hit with a Felony Petition to Revoke on August 11 of this year, seven days after he was charged with Aggravated Assault on a Family or Household Member. The assault charge resulted in an Order of Protection from Phillip's spouse.

Phillips received a 72-month suspended sentence on a guilty plea in November of 2017 on a Possession of Drug Paraphernalia charge. The August Revocation filing is based on his suspended sentence in that case.

Phillips was sentenced in June of 2015 to 48-months on a Breaking and Entering charge, but obviously was back on the streets in less than 20 months, based on his March, 2017 arrest on the drug charges.

Tommy had a pretty long stretch on the straight and narrow prior to his 20175 exploits, having been sentenced to 36-months prison time in 2007 for Breaking and Entering out of the Greenwood district court. He also did time on a Burglary charge, another Breaking and Entering pinch and for Manufacture, Delivery or Possession of a Controlled Substance between 2003 and 2007.

Phillips is scheduled for his first court appearance on the Rape charge on December 2 at 9 am.

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