By Ray King

An inmate at the Department of Corrections Varner Maximum Security Unit failed to convince the Arkansas Court of Appeals that he was not guilty of assaulting a prison employee.

Curtis Pittman, 41, was sentenced to 15 years in prison following a trial in 2023 where a jury found him guilty of assaulting Capt. Cantrell Bass by spitting on him.

Circuit Judge Jodi Raines Dennis sentenced Pittman following the trial in Lincoln County Circuit Court.

In his appeal, Pittman claimed that Bass and Sgt. Latasha Williams lied when they said Pittman spit on the sleeve of Bass’s shirt during a confrontation in Pittman’s cell on Dec. 6, 2011.

When he testified, Pittman said he and Bass had “gotten into it in the past” and said he was “going to get Pittman back.”

He contended that the evidence presented at trial was insufficient to convict him but the Appeals Court disagreed.

Pittman will be eligible to apply for parole in 2029.