Top stories: 3 arrested in 2018 murder

Thursday, January 6, 2022
Joshua Anderson

Three Carroll County men were arrested on Feb. 8, 2021, in connection with the murder of a Eureka Springs man exactly three years earlier.

Charles Hanna

Josh Anderson, 41, and Charles Hanna, 32, both of Berryville, and Jason Helm, 35, of Holiday Island were arrested in the Feb. 8, 2018, murder of Chris Alvard at his home near Eureka Springs.

Jason Helm

“These arrests came after a three-year investigation involving hundreds of investigative hours,” a new release from the Carroll County Sheriff’s Office said. “The Carroll County Sheriff’s Office and Arkansas State Police are extremely pleased to finally bring this case to court and ultimately provide closure to the family.”

Alvard’s body was discovered inside a residence at 674 Carroll County Road 116 near Eureka Springs by CCSO deputies who were dispatched to check on an open door.

The sheriff’s office requested assistance from the state police at the time of the murder and special agents from the ASP’s Criminal Investigation Team were assigned to the case.

One of the suspects confirmed to investigators that all three were involved in Alvard’s death, according to a probable-cause affidavit written by special agent Dale Bailey of the Arkansas State Police.

Family members became concerned when they couldn’t contact Alvard, according to the affidavit. Alvard’s mother went to his home and discovered the front door had been kicked in and there was a large amount of blood on the front porch, the affidavit says.

Carroll County deputies were dispatched to the scene and discovered Alvard’s body inside the doorway of the master bedroom, the affidavit says. Alvard’s dog was also found dead inside the residence and appeared to have been stabbed multiple times, according to the affidavit.

An autopsy later determined that Alvard died as the result of multiple stab wounds, the affidavit says.

According to the affidavit, the names of Anderson, Hanna and Helm “kept coming up as being involved” during the investigation into Alvard’s death.

“Based upon the three names, attempts were made to interview all three,” the affidavit says. “One of the three informed investigators that all three were involved in the death of Christopher Alvard. He stated that they initially went to the Alvard residence to ‘rough up’ Alvard. He stated Alvard fought back to the point where at least two of the potential defendants used deadly physical forced armed with knives.”

Other witnesses overheard or witnessed Anderson, Hanna and Helm discussing their involvement or saw evidence corroborating their involvement in Alvard’s death, the affidavit says.

All three men have pleaded not guilty to charges of first-degree murder and cruelty to animals.

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