A former Faulkner County Detention Center jailer facing sexual assault allegations pleaded not guilty in circuit court Monday.
John Franklin Hurt, 36, of Greenbrier was arrested Dec. 1 on suspicion of fourth-degree sexual assault.
On Monday, Hurt stood before Circuit Judge Charles "Ed" Clawson Jr. and pleaded not guilty to the allegations against him.
Clawson set out a March 6 pretrial in Hurt's case Monday and also appointed Otto Fry from the public defender's office to represent Hurt throughout his proceedings regarding the sexual assault allegations.
Hurt worked as a jailer for about a year and a half until he was fired Oct. 23.
Chief Deputy Matt Rice said Hurt was fired from the detention center following internal complaints, which triggered an investigation. The internal investigation led to criminal charges, and from there, was handed over to the Faulkner County Sheriff's Office Criminal Investigation Division.
According to a probable cause affidavit, the first complaint against Hurt was filed by an inmate on Oct. 17.
The inmate reported Hurt "told her she was bent over the wrong way and then 'smirked' saying 'there are no cameras in here'" when he accompanied her to get supplies from the supply room, according to the affidavit.
As she left the supply room, he "grabbed her butt" and "told her he would be back to work that night if she was interested in showing him her breast[s]," she reported.
Another inmate filed a report against Hurt the next day, Oct. 18, stating he made inappropriate comments about a photo of her that he looked up on Facebook.
Other reports filed against Hurt noted he was "being disgusting" and making inappropriate comments about a "blood flow check" when checking a female inmate's blood pressure.
Hurt initially denied making any comments about a "blood flow test" when questioned by CID but later said he was just "messing around" with the inmate, according to the affidavit.
He denied inappropriately touching the first inmate who filed a complaint against him, stating "he just patted her on the back and then went back down stairs."
During the interview, he admitted to investigators that this was not the first time he was fired by an employer following sexual harassment allegations.
"When asked if he had any other accusations of sexual assault, Mr. Hurt replied that he was accused of sexual assault from his previous employment at McDonald's in Greenbrier," the affidavit reads.
Dwight Leidholm, a manager at Greenbrier McDonald's, confirmed on Monday that Hurt began working at the restaurant in January 2016 but was fired about five months later following sexual harassment allegations.
Hurt, who is currently free on a $20,000 bond, is set to appear next in Faulkner County Circuit Court at 9 a.m. March 6 for a pretrial hearing.