Anyone in the City Hall building in Flippin, Ark., last Monday was likely "flippin' out” when Mayor James “J.J.” Hudson fired a rifle in the police chief’s office, shooting a baseball-sized hole through the second-floor window.
According to Hudson, he was handling a firearm seized by police when the weapon accidentally discharged.
Nine days after the incident, Hudson told the Baxter Bulletin, “It’s all been taken care of; it’s all been cleaned up. I’m not going to have any further comment on it.”
Despite the mayor’s words of assurance, the Bulletin reported that the window had not been repaired or replaced, and that shards of glass still decorated the entrance to City Hall.
According to Police Chief Dusty Smith, the incident unfolded as follows:
On 09/09/13 at approximately 9:28 a.m. I was in my office located at 239 East Main St in Flippin speaking with someone on the phone. Mayor Hudson came to my office and picked up a firearm that was in my office.
I heard a loud shot and looked up and observed the southeast corner window of my office broken. Mayor Hudson stated that the firearm had went off. Mayor Hudson advised me that he was attempting to unload the firearm and that the ammunition in it had jammed.
Mayor Hudson is no stranger to controversy; in November 2011, he was arrested and charged with drinking in public, public intoxication and third-degree battery after an altercation with a man outside a local apartment complex. Hudson publicly apologized for the incident, but refused to step down from office, despite pressure from one former councilmember.
Hudson had another brush with the law in November of 2012, when he was involved in a traffic accident and cited for driving under the influence of prescription opiate hydrocodone.
The mayor pled guilty to a misdemeanor DWI charge, but again refused to resign.