By Ray King

A $15,000 cash only bond was set Friday for a Pine Bluff man previously convicted of several felonies after he admitted having a handgun that had been reported stolen.

Pine Bluff District Judge John Kearney set the bond after ruling prosecutors have probable cause to charge Antonio Harris with theft by receiving and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

During the court hearing Friday, Deputy Prosecutor Jay Gerard said Harris was arrested after police responded to a reported armed disturbance at Strong Manufacturing on Emmett Sanders Road Wednesday.

The plant manager told police that Harris had been terminated and would not leave the property and  that he had seen a handgun in Harris’s waistband. Detective Chris Wieland reported that Harris was located, and no gun was found. He left the property and then returned and was checked a second time and again no gun was found.

A warrants check showed that there were active warrants for Harris and Gerard said officers were notified that an employee had located the weapon.

When Harris was questioned, he admitted having the gun and said he did not want to leave it in his vehicle. He also said he had the gun for self-protection.

Gerard said Harris had previously been convicted of first-degree battery, committing a terroristic act and fleeing in 2017 and terroristic threatening in 2019. The Public Defender’s Office was appointed to represent Harris.