FORT SMITH, Ark. (AP) — Authorities say two people in Arkansas died from stab wounds on Sunday and a third person was shot and killed by an officer whose neck was slashed after he found a man beating one of the stabbing victims with a rock.
Fort Smith Police Chief Danny Baker says an officer responding to a disturbance call found Christofer Conner beating his 15-year-old son.
When the officer tried to arrest Conner, police say he sliced the officer's throat and neck. Baker says the officer then fired two shots, killing Conner.
"The officer ordered Mr. Connor to stop,” said Baker. “Connor initially appeared to comply. The officer approached Connor and placed them in restraints and Connor produced an edged weapon slicing in the officer's throat and neck, and then, the officer fired two shots from the service weapons striking Connor, killing him, and ending the threat.”
Baker says the officer is in stable condition and the boy later died at a hospital.
Police later discovered the body of a woman, 42-year-old Julie Marie Moore, who had been fatally stabbed inside a home. A 5-year-old was also found safe.
"This child is currently in the care of the family. I have no doubt that our officer's swift action saved this young child's life,” said Baker.
Baker says the department is thankful for officers who put their lives on the line to protect the people of Fort Smith, and they're thankful for the community that always pulls together when tragedy strikes.
"No one believes in the sanctity of life more than the men and women in the Fort Smith Police Department. Each one of us is sworn to protect it at all costs. So, it hurts us as much as it does each of you when an outcome like this is unavoidable," said Baker.
The injured officer, along with a second officer who responded to the scene, will be placed on paid administrative leave. The department says it’s standard procedure in police-involved shootings.