BENTONVILLE, Ark. (KNWA) — Bentonville police officer shoots and kills a teenager near the scene of a reported robbery. Arkansas State Police said the shooting happened late Friday night in Bentonville just before 11:30pm in the area of Greenhouse Road and SW Briar Creek avenue. People who live in the area said they are shocked that something like this happened in their neighborhood.
“We have never heard of anything happening in this area, we get some small crimes…but nothing to this magnitude, ” said local resident and President of the Property Ownership Association of the Riverwalk Farm Nathan Eddy.
“This is totally shocking. I’ve lived in Bentonville for 17 years, to have something like this happen in my yard, it’s just crazy,” said local resident and business owner Kevin Chaffold.
Chaffold said he rushed home after his wife called and said she heard gunshots outside of their home Friday night. “They had this whole area taped off like a crime scene from the edges of this street right here to Greenhouse, no one could get up and down this street.”
Arkansas State police say a Bentonville police officer was responding to a report of an attempted robbery at the Kum and Go convenience store, just after 11 o’clock. The officer saw 17-year-old Dominick Matt walking near Greenhouse Road and Southwest Briar Creek Avenue, just a few blocks from the gas station and approached him. During the encounter, the officer claims Matt brandished a handgun causing the officer to shoot him.
“I peeked outside and looked down the street and you could see the light and some of the tape, you know the caution tape,” said Eddy.
Eddy came outside after hearing the commotion. “I could see a couple in the middle of the street and a lady was crying. The emotion was just someone hysterical crying it was just sad.”
Matt’s parents, tell us Matt had just woken up from a nap, walked his dog and headed out to a friend’s house. They said Matt frequently visited the Gum and go convenience store. They said he was a good kid who’s never been in trouble with the law.
“It is never a good time for something like this hug your loved ones, especially during the holidays. You never know what could happen. Life is too short,” said Eddy.
At this time we do not know if a gun was recovered at the scene. A.S.P. is working to find out if the teen was involved in the store robbery and if the use of deadly force used was consistent with state laws.
The officer involved has been placed on administrative leave until the investigation is complete.