Woman’s bail set at $750,000 after hit-and-run video shown

A Little Rock woman charged with first-degree murder over the 2021 hit-and-run death of a pedestrian whom she was said to be feuding with saw her bail set at $750,000 Thursday after prosecutors played a video of the victim’s final moments in the street and complained that the defendant had skipped court hearings in other cases almost two dozen times.

Deputy prosecutor Scott Duncan described 35-year-old Porchia Calloway at the bond hearing a “danger to our community” who has “no regard for authority.”

He told Pulaski County Circuit Judge Karen Whatley that he had found 23 instances over the past few years where Calloway did not show up for court, mostly on misdemeanor traffic and domestic violence charges, but also during juvenile court proceedings involving one of her sons. None of those instances resulted in criminal charges.

Duncan also told the judge that Calloway has a history of threats and violence, stating that Calloway once texted her probation officer to brag that she had anger issues and could hurt the officer. Calloway is on probation for terroristic threatening and second-degree battery and has a pending terroristic-threatening case.

Calloway did not testify, but her attorney, Joe Don Winningham, asked for “reasonable” bail, stating that the mother of eight had deep ties to the community, lives on disability and would not be a flight risk. The judge set bail at $750,000, expressing concern over the text message about Calloway’s anger.

Calloway has pleaded innocent, while Winningham has begun exploring a possible insanity defense by filing the paperwork for Calloway to have a mental examination by state doctors.

Calloway has been jailed without bail since her August arrest. Her murder charges, which include first-degree battery and leaving the scene of an accident with death, stem from the November 2021 death of Earlina Counts, a 51-year-old mother of five, who was run over about three weeks before Thanksgiving in front of Pic Pac Liquor at 4407 W. 12th St.

Calloway is not accused of killing Counts outright, with Detective Stephen Henry testifying Thursday that Counts was killed by a second hit-and-run driver, whom police have identified as 38-year-old John Terry Hill of Little Rock, who was arrested two days after Counts was run over. He is facing up to 20 years in prison on a leaving-the-scene charge, with his trial set for May.

Henry told the judge that a city traffic camera at the intersection of West 12th and Peyton streets that faces the liquor store recorded Counts being struck by Calloway’s car, then run over by Hill’s pickup.

Played twice in court for the judge, the video shows Counts walking across the street toward the liquor store when she is struck by a white sedan the detective said was driven by Calloway. The car appears to veer toward Counts, who is in the turn lane. Counts begins moving back to avoid the car, but the vehicle steers sharply to follow her as she puts her hands on the hood just as the car knocks her down in the street.

As Counts lies writhing on the street, the sedan then turns around past her, drives back west on 12th Street in front of the store and turns into the parking lot, then exits to pull up with its bumper next to the stricken woman. Someone gets out of the passenger side of the car, looks across the hood at the woman briefly, then gets back into the sedan, which then drives over Counts’ legs as she tries to crawl away.

The sedan turns north onto Peyton and leaves the camera view. Counts is left squirming in the street. One westbound car drives around her, but then a white pickup drives over Counts and drags her out of camera view.

The video lasts about three minutes, with barely 1½ minutes — 96 seconds — elapsing between the time Counts is first hit until she is run over by the pickup. Counts’ left leg was broken and her ankle crushed, the detective said.

Henry told the judge that police searched the neighborhood for the sedan, which he said had distinguishing damage on its roof, in the days after Counts was killed. Detectives found the car, a white 2005 Kia Amanti, about four blocks away, in front of Calloway’s home, 1023 Madison St.

Henry testified that he spoke to Calloway, telling her he was there about something that had happened a week earlier and asking whether she knew what he was talking about. Calloway said she did, telling Henry that her cousin and a friend had borrowed her car that night, which Henry told the judge seemed noteworthy because he had not said anything about her car.

The detective also said that he had talked to 40-year-old Asher Satterfield, an occasional boyfriend of Calloway’s, who said she had told him about deliberately running over a woman on 12th Street that she had been feuding with, whom she said was named “Lisa.” Satterfield told him that Calloway told him she had run over Lisa’s ankles with her car, describing how Lisa had then tried to stand up before falling, the detective said. Satterfield said that Calloway warned him that if he told anyone what he’d said, she’d do something to him, Henry testified.

Court records show that Calloway has been on probation since November 2019, when she pleaded guilty to two counts each of second-degree battery and terroristic threatening for an April 2019 arrest in North Little Rock, where she had attacked firefighters and emergency medical technicians who had come to help her. She sprayed them with pepper spray, as well as punching others and threatening to shoot them, according to a police report.

Rescuers had been called to Calloway’s then-residence at 217 E. 18th St. for some type of medical emergency, but she got belligerent from the start, then fought off their efforts to calm her down so they could see if anything was wrong with her. She threatened to shoot them, acting as if she had a gun on her, the report said.

Calloway, who complained she was having trouble moving one of her legs and appeared to have trouble breathing, locked herself in the house, resulting in a standoff that ended when police broke down the door and arrested her. She was taken to the hospital before being jailed that same day.

A terroristic-threatening charge is pending from her next arrest in March 2020 in Little Rock, based, in part, on a cellphone video and surveillance footage that shows her threatening 52-year-old Steve Brown, the branch manager at the Arkansas Federal Credit Union at 1221 S. Shackleford Road.

According to police, Brown had asked Calloway to leave after she got mad at a teller and caused a scene because a hold had been put on a $1,200 check she had deposited. Police said Calloway punched Brown in the back of the head and threatened to shoot him. She later denied making any such threat or striking him.

Since then, she’s also pleaded guilty to misdemeanor public intoxication five times as well as misdemeanor counts of disorderly conduct and criminal mischief.

In one of those cases, police found Calloway drunk with no shoes or pants in March 2020 in front of the Lovely Nails Salon, 6323 Colonel Glenn Road, where she had thrown up into a sink.

Shortly before she was arrested in the murder case last August, police found her naked and flailing her arms in the street at the intersection of 11th and Madison streets, and she beat on the patrol car and dented the right rear quarter panel.

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