Four arrests have been made in the homicide investigation of a 46-year-old Cabot man whose family reported him missing on Sept. 20 and his van was discovered 10 days later in Jacksonville.
According to reports compiled by the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department, four individuals have been arrested on charges in connection with the death of James Heath of Cabot. Persons arrested so far are Joyce Renee Rollf in northern Pulaski County, William Null of Jacksonville, John Posey of North Little Rock, and Taylor Arnold of Cabot.
The arrests took place on Friday where Null, Posey and Arnold were charged with first-degree murder (Y Felony), tampering with physical evidence (D Felony) and abuse of a corpse (C Felony). Rollf is awaiting to be officially charged. Following her arrest she was taken to a Little Rock hospital.
The arrests took place Friday, which was one day prior to the discovery of Heath’s body at 10306 Centennial Road in northern Pulaski County, which is the residence of Arnold and Rollf.
According to the arrest report, Null and Arnold were arrested after admitting to officers to being present while Heath was murdered at 10306 Centennial.
Null and Arnold also admitted to helping several other individuals wrap the victim’s body in sheets and place the body in a shallow grave in the back of the residence, according to the report.
Posey told police he received a call from Rollf telling him that she needed him at her house because she had someone there that needed to get beat up.
"Once there John heard Renee fighting with James Heath," states the report. "John then witnessed Renee beating James with a ball bat and cane. On two occasions, John blocked the path of the front and back doors when James tried to leave. The beating from Renee resulted in the death of James. John then helped carry the body of James from the house to a pre-dug shallow grave. John then helped and disposed of any evidence that contained blood and personal property of James by putting these items in a burn pile."
All three arrest reports indicate that their court dates are set for Nov. 27 in Pulaski County District Court.
Arnold was the first person arrested in the case, followed by Rolff and Null who were apprehended in a traffic stop in Pope County, and then Posey who was arrested in a separate incident on Friday.
Late last week the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department had issued a statement trying to locate Null and Rollf.
"I have just been advised by our Investigations Division that the vehicle we were looking for in connection with the homicide was located on a traffic stop in Pope County," Lt. Carl Minden, public information officer for the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office, said on Friday.
The apprehension came a day following the county sheriff’s office announcement that they were looking for two people and their vehicle:
• 1998 Chevrolet Cavalier / two-tone blue & teal, large dent on the trunk / Arkansas license plate 918OTN / registered to Rollf.
Police described her as a white female with brown hair, blue eyes, is 5-foot-4, weighs 120 pounds and was born on July 19, 1972.
Null was described as a white male with red hair, brown eyes standing 5-foot-9, weighing 195 pounds with a date of birth of Nov. 5, 1987.
Rollf and Null were both in the vehicle at the time of the stop," according to Minden.
Minden said investigators on Oct. 25 located the body of a white male later identified as Heath and a homicide investigation was initiated.
On Oct. 24, Mark Swagerty of the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Office assisted the Cabot Police Department at 6806 Tadpole Road in Cabot with Heath’s then month-old missing person case.
‘Fat Boy," which is Taylor Arnold’s nickname, came up as being at a residence on Centennial Road and was being sought as a witness in a missing-person case, according to the sheriff’s office report.
On Oct. 25, deputies were able to locate Arnold at 9622 Arrington Road in Cabot.
"I asked him if he knew about the missing person from Cabot," states the sheriff’s report. "He at first advised that he did not know anything about it. I explained to him that I was looking for leads that may help locate the missing person. I told him I had information that the missing person was seen with him at his recent residence located at 10306 W. Centennial Road. Arnold said that he had seen the person and knew who I was talking about."
Arnold further told investigators that he knew the "body’ of the missing person was at the residence located 10306 W. Centennial.
"I asked him how he knew the body was there and if he had actually seen it or if he had just heard about it. Arnold went on to tell me that he had actually seen the body. I asked Arnold to come with me to my office and he agreed," according to the report. "While at my office I asked him where he saw the body at and who had put the body where it was located. Arnold stated that the body was in the backyard of the residence about 10-15 yards over a fence. I asked Arnold if he saw who put the body behind the residence. Arnold would just shrug his shoulders and not give a verbal answer. I asked him again who he saw put the body behind the residence. He again just shrugged his shoulders. I told Arnold that by the way he was acting it looked like he was the one that put the body behind the residence. Taylor then stated, ‘I helped put the body behind the house’."
Taylor told police he was present when Heath as murdered and he helped wrap the body and place it in a shallow grave behind the house.