Police: Man Used Machete in Homeless Camp Attack

FORT SMITH, AR -- A homeless man is facing battery charges after police say he slashed someone's arm with a machete.

On Wednesday evening around 6:45, Fort Smith Police and EMS responded to the bus station at 123 North 6th Street where they found Timothy Riley with a severe cut to his right arm. Police say Riley, 36, was drunk and resisted officers, but eventually explained he had been stabbed by a man near the “south homeless camp.”

Officers went to the camp where they found John Daniel Howard III and woman who said she had witnessed the exchange. The woman, Mary Hall, said she and the victim had been drinking together and began arguing. She told police Riley hit her and then left the camp, heading towards downtown.

Howard reportedly followed Riley carrying a machete then returned to the camp about twenty minutes later.

Police say Howard agreed to go with detectives to the police department for an interview. Howard was later arrested for Battery 2nd Degree. The machete believed to have been used in the crime was seized from the homeless camp as evidence.

Howard is currently being held at the Sebastian County Detention Center without bond.

Riley was transported by EMS to a local hospital, and, as of Thursday, remains hospitalized for treatment of his injury.

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