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story.lead_photo.caption Jack Gillean, right, stands with attorney Nicki Nicolo after a hearing Monday in Faulkner County Circuit Court. - Photo by Gavin Lesnick

— Two former University of Central Arkansas officials, including the school's ex-president, had innocent pleas entered Monday in separate criminal proceedings against them.

Defense attorney Tim Dudley entered the pleas for former UCA President Allen Meadors and former chief of staff Jack Gillean at the same hearing before Faulkner County Circuit Judge Charles Clawson.

Meadors did not attend the brief hearing. Gillean did, though he didn't speak during or after it.

After the hearing, Sam Perroni, another attorney for Gillean, questioned the strength of the evidence in the case. He said it would be "amusing to watch the prosecution try to prove this case."

Ex-UCA chief of staff pleads innocent

Former University of Central Arkansas chief of staff Jack Gillean entered an innocent plea Monday in Faulkner County Circuit Court. (By Gavin Lesnick)
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"It's easy to prepare an affidavit filled with lies, rumors and innuendos and call it evidence," Perroni said. "But when it comes to going to court and proving it beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law, it's another matter."

Clawson also scheduled Jan. 14 hearings for both men. He said a trial date would likely be set for each at that point.

Jack Gillean is accused of providing keys so a student could steal tests from professors' offices. He is facing three felony counts of commercial burglary, one felony count of fraudulent insurance acts and one misdemeanor count of issuing a false statement.

Gillean resigned from UCA in June after being questioned about the keys.

Meadors is facing a charge of solicitation of tampering with a public document tied to a food vendor's $700,000 offer to renovate the UCA president's home. Meadors resigned in September 2011.

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  • RichardCranium
    November 19, 2012 at 1:38 p.m.

    Love how they show the hot attorney in every pic.

  • jmoz
    November 19, 2012 at 2:56 p.m.

    Previously it was reported that the charge against Meadors was a misdemeanor. Did Debra Hale-Shelton up the charge to a felony on her own? Surely this is not intentional misreporting of the charges so as to influence a potential jury pool. Or just to make UCA look worse than it already looks.

    Did UCA not have competent in-house legal counsel when all this transpired?