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Independence Co. coroner acquitted of drug charge | News

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Independence Co. coroner acquitted of drug charge
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Independence County Coroner Hardy Willis has been acquitted by a federal court jury of a charge of distributing marijuana found hidden in a casket in a funeral home van.

The Batesville Daily Guard reported Thursday that the jury in U.S. District Court at Little Rock deliberated about two hours and 45 minutes Wednesday evening before returning with its verdict.

Prosecutors charged Willis after a man was arrested in Texas on June 23, 2009, driving a van belonging to a funeral home. Investigators said they found 100 pounds of marijuana, hidden inside a casket. Willis reported the van stolen the day after the arrest.

Willis, who lost a bid for re-election this year, said he might run for coroner again in 2012.
(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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