Jury selection has been scheduled for April for a Miller County man accused of raping his Sunday school teacher in her Texarkana, Ark., home last year.
Jones heard arguments Friday from Hayes’ legal team, Lawrence Walker and Crystal Okoro of Little Rock, regarding several pretrial motions. The defense argued it needs more time to review recordings of conversations Hayes has had while locked up in the Miller County jail. Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Connie Mitchell provided the defense with several recordings in September which the state intends to use at trial. In response, the defense asked for all recordings and Jones ordered the state to turn them over.
Jones denied a defense motion asking that the state turn over the alleged victim’s medical records for the last 20 years. The state argued that the defense is only entitled to medical records related to the alleged assault under the law. Jones agreed.
Jones also denied a defense motion to dismiss the case based on alleged violations of Hayes’ right to speak confidentially with his lawyers. Walker told the court that some of the jail recordings he has reviewed are of Hayes speaking with his legal team. Mitchell and Chief Deputy Prosecutor Chuck Black told the court they have not listened to any recordings of Hayes with his attorneys. Jones issued an order forbidding recordings of Hayes’ conversations with his legal team by staff at the jail.
Jones scheduled the case for jury selection in late April. Hayes has been in jail since his arrest on a probation violation. Warrants for Hayes’ arrest on two counts of rape, two counts of theft of property and charges of aggravated residential burglary, kidnapping and robbery were served while Hayes was in the Miller County jail.
Hayes is accused of pushing his way into the alleged victim’s home at about 1 a.m. on Nov. 22, 2015, when the woman opened a door to let out her dog. Hayes allegedly raped the woman twice before forcing her to ride in her car as he drove to an ATM where he made her withdraw cash. The woman told investigators she was released in a Texarkana, Ark., neighborhood and her attacker drove away in her car.
Several days after the attack, Hayes was identified as a suspect using surveillance footage from the bank where Hayes forced the woman to withdraw $500. The woman reported her attacker wore a hoodie and sunglasses. After Hayes’ mugshot was published by local media, the woman reported to investigators that he had once been a participant in her Sunday school class.
Hayes is facing 10 to 40 years or life if found guilty of rape, aggravated residential burglary, kidnapping and robbery on each of the five charges. He could receive additional time if convicted of stealing the woman’s car and debit card.