Man arrested after allegedly beating nurse

A 27-year-old Pine Bluff man was arrested Thursday after he allegedly beat an employee at the Jefferson Comprehensive Care Center at East 10th Avenue and Tennessee Street, near the Pine Bluff Convention Center.

Police said William Brown, 27, was taken into custody after officers responded to the center just after noon.

Pine Bluff Police Department Lt. JoAnn Bates said Brown entered the building at 12:07 p.m. and produced what turned out to be a toy gun, and also two items he said were bombs that were also fakes.

Bates said Brown was a mental patient and Detective Lt. Terry Hopson said Brown had previously received treatment at the center and had returned for a follow-up when he allegedly took two employees, a nurse and a nurse practitioner, hostage in an examination room and allegedly beat one of them.

Lt. Lance Lawhon, the commander of the department’s SWAT team, arrived at the center about 30 seconds after the initial call and, along with several other SWAT team members was able to take Brown into custody without further incident, Bates said.

After Brown was taken to the Detective Office, Hopson said Brown broke free and tried to escape, and was apprehended almost immediately.

Brown is being held at the W. C.”Dub” Brassell Adult Detention Center on probable cause of two counts of false imprisonment, two counts of terroristic threatening, one count of second-degree battery and one count of escape pending an expected court appearance Friday in Pine Bluff District Court. Hopson said police plan to ask prosecutors to hold Brown with no bond, or if that is not possible, for an extremely high bond in the case.

Police said the two victims did not appear to have life-threatening or debilitating injuries, but one of the two was taken to Jefferson Regional Medical Center for treatment.

Their names were not immediately available and the investigation is continuing.