Jo has been with 5 NEWS as a reporter for one year. She grew up in the River Valley. She has worked in the T.V. news business over 10 years. She lives in Van Buren with her husband David and their daughter Hattie.

Recent Articles
  • Fort Smith City Director Wants To Dissolve Police Department’s Civil Service Commission

    FORT SMITH (KFSM) — If a position of sergeant rank or higher needs to be filled in the Fort Smith Police Department, it has to be filled or promoted from within the department. Police Chief Nathaniel Clark went before the Civil Service Commission on Monday (May 22) and asked that the policy be changed. Clark wanted the option to hire outside applicants to fill those positions. The members of the commission denied Clark’s request. “It would have allowed the ability of the […]

  • Local Business Owner Says $25,000 Worth of Equipment Stolen

    FORT SMITH (KFSM) — The owner of River Valley Pools said some of his specialty tools were stolen early Monday morning (May 22). The items were stolen from a warehouse at Fort Chaffee. Owner Steve Dawson said $25,000 worth of items were taken. In surveillance video, you can see a vehicle parked near the tools and a few minutes later a truck joins the vehicle. “It appears to me that it’s a late model Dodge pick up. It has factory wheels. It’s a four […]

  • Civil Service Commission Says No To Police Chiefs Request To Change Hiring Process

    FORT SMITH (KFSM) — On Monday (May 22), Fort Smith Police Chief Nathaniel Clark asked the Civil Service Commission to allow him to hire Sergeant ranking officers and those ranking above from outside of the department if necessary. Currently, the rank of Sergeant and above has to be filled from within house. The Civil Service Commission turned down the request to hire from outside of the department. “By all means I support my staff, but at the end of the […]

  • Memorial Held To Honor Sebastian County Fallen Officers

    FORT SMITH (KFSM)– In honor of National Police Week a special memorial was held in Fort Smith at the Sebastian County Courthouse. Many law enforcement officers, friends and family members showed up to give their support. A stone plaque sits outside of the courthouse and now has 16 names of Sebastian county law enforcement officers who were killed while in the line of duty. One more name was added this year, that of Sebastian County Deputy Bill Cooper, who was […]

  • Local Lake Levels Are High; Park Rangers Urging Caution For Memorial Day Weekend Plans

    VIAN (KFSM) — Many people are planning trips to local lakes this weekend and Memorial Day Weekend, but park rangers are urging caution. Many lakes are still reeling from recent flooding and it could get worse with more rain on the way this weekend. “The water levels are gradually decreasing. They were at up to about 32 feet high. So, the water level is dropping and we are trying to provide access in those areas that we can,” Les Pulliam, Lake […]

  • Fort Smith Board Meeting Moved To Larger Venue After Interest In Recycling Debacle

    FORT SMITH (KFSM) — The Fort Smith Board of Directors study session scheduled for Tuesday (May 23) has been moved to the Fort Smith Convention Center due to a piqued interest in the recycling debacle. The study sessions are typically held at the Fort Smith Public Library on Tuesdays at noon. Due to interest from residents and a way to accommodate a larger viewing audience, the meeting will now be held on the same date but at 6 p.m. The […]

  • Greenwood Football Coach In Critical Condition After Developing Extremely Rare Skin Condition

    GREENWOOD (KFSM) — Greenwood school officials confirm football coach Brian Sims is currently fighting for his life in critical condition. According to Greenwood head football coach Rick Jones, Sims is in the burn unit of Hill Crest Medical Center in Tulsa, Oklahoma and has been diagnosed with TEN, Toxic Epidermal Necrolysis and Stevens-Johnson Syndrome. “It’s a very rare condition and basically your skin starts burning as a reaction,” Jones said. “They think medication but they really don’t know the cause. […]

  • Fired Fort Smith Sanitation Director Plans To File Possible Wrongful Termination Lawsuit, Lawyer Says

    FORT SMITH (KFMS) — A former Fort Smith sanitation director who was fired earlier this week is possibly planning to file a lawsuit for wrongful termination, his lawyer said. Mark Schlievert, former Fort Smith sanitation director, was terminated on Wednesday (May 10). He said when he returned from lunch the Fort Smith City Administrator, Carl E. Geffken was waiting at his office. “He said, ‘well, let me get right to the point of this. Effective immediately, you’re terminated. I have […]

  • Police Chief Proposes Plan To Restructure Department Ranks

    FORT SMITH (KFSM) — Fort Smith Police Chief Nathaniel Clark announced on Tuesday (May 9) that he is seeking city leaders approval to restructure the police department. “We want to enhance our department. We want to enhance our service delivery to the community and one way we can do it is to make sure our rank structure is in the norm with other departments,” Clark said. Clark presented an ordinance to the Fort Smith Board of Directors that would bring more […]

  • Steel Horse Rally Takes Over Garrison Avenue; Thousands Expected To Attend

    FORT SMITH (KFSM) — The Steel Horse Rally is in full swing on Garrison Avenue in downtown Fort Smith. According to event organizers, the rally is expected to bring nearly 30,000 to the area over the weekend. Garrison Avenue will shut down Friday night (May 5) to allow bikes to be parked on the center line from one end to the other. The event is becoming a staple for the city of Fort Smith with bikers from all over the […]

  • Fort Smith Recyclables Disposed Of In Landfill

    FORT SMITH (KFSM) — Fort Smith city leaders said the recyclable materials that residents place on their curb has been dumped at the Fort Smith Landfill since July of 2016. City leaders said the recyclable materials used to be shipped to a material recycling facility. “The City of Fort Smith’s most recent contract for taking its recyclables expired in September of 2014, when local vendor Smurfit KAPPA closed its single-stream processing and accepted only pre-sorted paper and cardboard. As no local […]

  • Mom Of Surviving Child In Boating Accident Speaks Out

    FORT SMITH (KFSM) — Last Sunday, rescue crews entered the water of the Arkansas River to search for a family of four who set out on a fishing trip near Lock and Dam 14 in Fort Coffee. Crews assume it was an engine failure that swept their boat under the gates of the dam. Only one family member survived, 4-year-old Weston Farhat. “This little guy is meant to do something in this life,” Kaylee Walden said. “I went down there and […]