KEVIN MURPHY: Retiring.

Kevin Murphy, who endured several controversies during a four-decade career in Arkansas corrections, has announced that he’s retiring effective Nov. 1 as director of Community Correction, now a division of the Department of Correction after some years as a free-standing agency..

In the screen shot of an e-mail to employees, Murphy said he’d informed the governor and chair of the board of corrections. His note said in part:

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Murphy was the focus of a critical state audit released earlier this year about his receiving money on the side from an association related to corrections employees while a state employee. He also had retirement benefits from an earlier stint as a state employee. He was found in a case settled by the Insurance Department to have operated an unregulated insurance business. His choice to lead community corrections after Sheila Sharp was fired for protesting insufficient financial support by the state was controversial for other reasons. As a prison official, his record included federal court action relative to brutality toward a female inmate, a civil rights case brought against him that resulted in pre-trial diversion.

A department spokesman has confirmed the announcement. Nothing known yet about a successor.

A spokesman for the governor also confirmed the news.
“The Governor appreciates his long-time service to the state and his administration and wishes him the best in retirement.”