Two brothers accused of holding another man at gunpoint while forcing him to dig his own grave will stand trial this week.
Michael J. Phillips, 26, and Tommy Phillips, 30, of Vilonia, are currently being held in the county jail on suspicion of kidnapping, attempted capital murder and first-degree terroristic threatening. They have each pleaded not guilty to the aforementioned charges.
The two are set to appear in Faulkner County Circuit Court at 10 a.m. Monday for a pretrial hearing prior to their two-day jury trial, which begins Wednesday.
The charges filed against the Phillips brothers stem from a Jan. 21 incident where the Faulkner County Sheriff’s Office was called out to a possible kidnapping on Brannon Landing in south Faulkner County, near Mayflower.
The woman who called said two or three men forced her boyfriend at gunpoint to get into a dark gray Nissan with the license plate number 688 VCA. The vehicle headed toward Highway 365, according to an incident report.
“Deputies learned that a Michael Phillips and Tommy Phillips were suspected on having the kidnapping victim, as well as another man digging their own graves at gunpoint” on Allen Drive, also southeast of Mayflower, FCSO spokesman Adam Bledsoe said.
Tommy fled in the woods before FCSO made it to Allen Drive.
Deputies found a shovel, green chainsaw, black ax and “freshly disturbed dirt” near “the beginnings of a hole in the ground” while searching the area, according to the report.
Michael was arrested on the scene and is currently being held on a $1 million bond.
Tommy turned himself in a few days later and is currently being held in lieu of a $2 million bond.