A Democratic candidate for a statewide office in Arkansas was arrested this week and has been charged with felony terroristic threatening.
Diamond Arnold-Johnson, who is running to be state auditor, appears to have live-streamed her own arrest by the Little Rock Police Department, the Conservative Brief reported.
Allegations of terroristic threatening against a judge
Local NBC affiliate KARK reported that Arnold-Johnson was taken into custody without incident by the LRPD without incident on Friday while an outstanding warrant was served on her at her home.
The outlet noted that Arnold-Johnson recorded and live-streamed the event on Facebook with her cell phone, and could be seen opening the door of her home for several uniformed officers.
Local ABC affiliate KATV reported that the felony warrant for terroristic threatening stemmed from Arnold-Johnson’s own admission during a trial in August for her husband, Arick Johnson, that she had actually written threatening Facebook posts that had been attributed to him.
The husband had been charged with making terroristic threats against a Pulaski County judge who had found him guilty in a 2015 trial for making terroristic threats against the wife of an Arkansas State Police trooper with whom he had an ongoing feud — but as KATV noted, Arnold-Johnson admitted to posting the threats against the judge herself.
KATV further noted that police had attempted to serve the warrant on Arnold-Johnson on October 13, but she had refused to exit her home and, following a brief stand-off in which a SWAT team had been called out, the police backed down in favor of de-escalation at that time.
Opponent calls for withdrawal from race
The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported that Arnold-Johnson had decried the October 13 incident as “malicious prosecution and abuse of power by police,” and declared, “This is a form of harassment.”
Per Arkansas law, a person is only barred from running for public office if they are convicted of a felony crime, so Arnold-Johnson will continue to be listed as a candidate for state auditor in the general election on November 8, for which early voting in the state has already begun.
Her Republican opponent, state Treasurer Dennis Milligan, said she was “unfit to hold office” and urged her to withdraw from the race. “Anyone who has an active felony warrant for their arrest should not be running for office or handling the state’s very important financial business,” he said in a statement. “Rather, their time and energy would benefit more from focusing on their’s and their spouse’s legal morass.”
State party distances itself
“Earlier today, we were made aware that Diamond Arnold-Johnson was arrested by Little Rock Police,” the Arkansas Democratic Party said in a statement, according to local CBS affiliate KTHV. “Everyone has the right to due process; however, our Party firmly believes people must be held accountable for any criminal behavior, especially candidates for public office.”
“The Democratic Party of Arkansas did not recruit her to run for Auditor of State, and we cannot bar her from running for this position. We remain focused on working for a better Arkansas and winning races across the state,” the party added, clearly distancing itself from the troubled candidate.