Driver accused in fatal crash arrested again

John Hacker

A Carthage teenager was arrested in Joplin for allegedly possessing alcohol and threatening a sheriff’s deputy, the day before he was to appear in court for a sentencing hearing on two separate cases dating from June and October 2007.

Jarub Baird, 18, is also the alleged driver in a car crash from Dec. 8, 2006, that left Hannah Smallwood, 15, Carthage, dead and two other teenagers injured.

Sunday’s arrest was Baird’s third since the crash.

The Jasper County Sheriff’s Department said Baird was being held Monday on a total of more than $16,000 cash bond.

Baird is scheduled to appear at 9 a.m. today in Jasper County Circuit Court in Carthage for sentencing on a misdemeanor charge of receiving stolen property from a June 2007 arrest, and misdemeanor counts of possession of liquor by a minor and supplying liquor to a minor from an October 2007 arrest.

He is scheduled for trial in Joplin on the charges stemming from the December 2006 car crash at 9 a.m., Feb. 6.

In the latest incident, Jasper County Sheriff’s Deputy Chad Karr said in a sworn statement that he was dispatched to the Fastrip convenience store in Jasper at 11:55 p.m. Sunday in reference to a suspicious person and vehicle.

Karr wrote that the reporting party told him Baird was the suspicious person he called about. The officer wrote that he smelled a strong odor of intoxicants and Baird showed other signs of intoxication.

Karr said Baird admitted to drinking alcohol the night before. Baird’s breath tested positive for alcohol.

Karr wrote that once under arrest, “Baird made several threats toward the deputy, advising the deputy he was going to assault him. Baird spit toward the deputy while in transport.”

Jasper County Prosecutor Dean Dankelson said the facts of the case fit a misdemeanor charge, not a felony, but he requested a higher bond because of Baird’s past history.

Deputy Karr wrote “Baird has a parent who is a bail bondsman, allowing Baird to be free on bond every time he commits a crime. It is my belief that Jarub Baird has an attitude of he has nothing to lose, and is going to commit more crimes.”

Carthage Press