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Deadly Officer-Involved Shooting in North Little Rock Startles Church Service

A man stirring trouble on a city bus full of passengers was shot and killed by North Little Rock police on Wednesday.
"I've not heard a lot of gunshots in my life, but this was gunshots."
NORTH LITTLE ROCK, AR - "I've not heard a lot of gunshots in my life, but this was gunshots," says witness Cornelius Mabin. A man stirring trouble on a city bus full of passengers was shot and killed by North Little Rock police on Wednesday. "He was assaulted by the suspect on the bus," Mabin says. According to authorities, a man in his 50s or 60s caused a Central Arkansas Transit bus to stop its route. When police got there, the man reportedly started hitting the officer with a cane. That veteran police officer pulled out his gun, shooting and killing the suspect.

The NLRPD tells us state law and department policy has rules for when an officer can shoot his gun. Among those are two that could be applied in this case. First, when a felony is being committed (hitting a police officer is a felony) and second, emminent use of deadly physical force (not the use of a deadly weapon but force that could be deadly).

The shooting happened just after noon just feet away from a church that wasn't empty. During the struggle an Ash Wednesday service was going on. "We shut the door, and we locked the door, and we called 911," says Rev. Anne Russ with First Presbyterian Church. While it may not have been expected on this Christian holiday, the pastor says its quite fitting. "The whole point of Ash Wednesday is that we acknowledge how frail life is, and how little control we have over it, as we are saying those words and imposing ashes on someone, we have shots fired outside the church," she says. Despite the gun play the church and surrounding businesses say safety is not a worry on their streets.

Aaron Nolan, reporting
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