Arkansas Law Enforcement

Asa Hutchinson signs an executive order Thursday creating the Arkansas School Safety Commission.
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

In the aftermath of the latest school shooting in the United States, an Arkansas panel will study ways to better protect students and teachers. Gov. Asa Hutchinson signed an executive order Thursday creating the Arkansas School Safety Commission.

The 11 members come from education and law enforcement backgrounds, and the governor will appoint a mental health professional in the coming days. Additional appointees from different geographic regions of the state may also be named.

Robinson Center
Michael Hibblen / KUAR News

Beginning this weekend all people attending live, ticketed performances at venues owned by the city of Little Rock will have to go through metal detectors. Those venues include Robinson Center Music Hall, First Security Amphitheater and the Statehouse Convention Center.

Efforts to improve safety at large gatherings like concerts were stepped up after October’s mass shooting in Las Vegas where a gunman firing down from a hotel room at a country music festival killed 58 people and injured more than 800.

North Little Rock Police Shooting
North Little Rock PD

North Little Rock police have released video from a deadly encounter with a teenager, with its police chief saying he hopes to knock down "misinformation" that the 17-year-old wasn't armed and quell threats made against the agency.

The five-minute video from a patrol car's dashboard camera released Wednesday shows Charles Smith pulling out a gun and firing at officers. Police returned fire, killing Smith early Sunday.

Morgan Nick
Wikipedia

Authorities are searching an eastern Oklahoma property that was searched years ago in connection with the 1995 disappearance of a 6-year-old Arkansas girl.

Investigators aren't saying whether this week's search is connected to the unsolved abduction of Morgan Nick, for whom Arkansas' missing-child alert system is named.

The search is taking place in Spiro, Oklahoma, about 25 miles southwest of the Arkansas town of Alma where Morgan was last seen at a baseball field. Investigators say Morgan was abducted from a Little League game as she chased fireflies with friends.

www.are.uscourts.gov

A federal judge has blocked a new law that seeks to restrict panhandling in Arkansas. The law was the second attempt by the Arkansas Legislature to ban people from asking for money and other help on most sidewalks and intersections.

Despite the law passing with bipartisan support, U.S. District Court Judge Billy Roy Wilson said the law proposed by Rep. Charlie Collins (R-Fayetteville) is “plainly unconstitutional.” Collins tells KUAR News he authored the law to put an end to threatening conduct by panhandlers.

KATV, Channel 7 News

An Arkansas Game and Fish Commission spokesman says authorities are investigating the discovery of tigers, lions and a leopard in a barn in Arkansas.

Spokesman Randy Zellers says that seven tigers, six lions and one leopard were discovered Saturday in Poinsett County in cages. The Poinsett County Sheriff's Department went to the scene after receiving an anonymous tip, he says.

State law generally prohibits ownership of such animals with some exemptions, including accredited zoos and people with permits that they obtained the animal years ago.

Deputy Timothy Braden
Drew County Sheriff's Office

An Arkansas sheriff’s deputy has died after an accident that  authorities say occurred during a police chase. Arkansas State Police identified the deputy as 29-year-old Timothy Braden who was with the Drew County Sheriff’s office.

A report says he tried to stop a vehicle early Thursday near Monticello, with the driver refusing to stop. Both vehicles were then involved in an accident.

A state prosecutor says two eastern Arkansas police officers won't face charges in the fatal shooting of a black teenager outside an emergency youth shelter.

Prosecutor Scott Ellington says 16-year-old saying Aries Clark pointed a black BB gun at officers when he was shot on July 25 in Marion.

Ellington said Wednesday that the two local officers - Brannon Hinkle and Wesley Smith - were justified in using lethal force. He noted that body camera footage shows Clark raised what appeared to be a pistol toward the officers outside East Arkansas Youth Services.

Arkansas State Police say a teenager has died after he was shot by officers outside of a youth shelter in eastern Arkansas.

State police said Wednesday that the 16-year-old died at a hospital overnight in Memphis, Tennessee. Police say the shooting occurred Tuesday night shooting outside the East Arkansas Youth Services in Marion, a city about 10 miles (16 kilometers) northwest of Memphis.

The boy's name has not yet been released, pending notification of family members.


An 11-member jury ruled in favor of former Little Rock police Lt. David Hudson in an excessive force case in federal court on Wednesday.

 

Hudson was working as an off-duty security guard at Ferneau, a restaurant in the Hillcrest neighborhood, on Oct. 29, 2011 when he punched Chris Erwin in the face seven times on the sidewalk outside after asking Erwin and his party to leave the establishment. 

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