The Arkansas State Police issued more information this morning about the officer-involved shooting in Pope County yesterday. The individual shot and killed by a sheriff’s deputy was Quinton Phillips, 83, of Dover.
The Pope County Sheriff’s Department said that they responded to a call about an armed disturbance at 2213 Morgan Road at 3:10 p.m. Thursday afternoon to find Phillips holding a rifle.
“Phillips was given orders by the sheriff’s deputies to drop the gun. Instead, he reportedly took cover behind a truck and fired the gun at deputies,” the release states. “No law enforcement officers were injured during the incident.”
The state police is leading an investigation into the shooting to determine whether use of deadly force was justified. It is perhaps worth remembering that the Pope County Sheriff’s Department has been penalized in the past for failing to retain evidence in an incident that led to a police brutality lawsuit. Although the jury did not award damages to the plaintiffs in that case — which stemmed from a 2011 incident that also occurred in Dover — a judge ordered the county to pay $4,500 in attorney fees because evidence that should have existed from recording devices was missing. This time around, let’s hope there’s more of a record of what happened leading up to Phillips’ death.
Here’s the full release:
Quinton Phillips, 83, of Dover has been identified as the individual who died last night after he reportedly fired a rifle at local law enforcement officers.
At approximately 3:10 PM yesterday (Thursday, December 2nd) Pope County Sheriff’s Deputies responded to a call of an armed disturbance located in the Dover community.
On their arrival at 2213 Morgan Road, county and local law enforcement officers were confronted by Phillips who was holding a rifle. Phillips was given orders by the sheriff’s deputies to drop the gun. Instead, he reportedly took cover behind a truck and fired the gun at deputies.
No law enforcement officers were injured during the incident.
Special Agents of the Arkansas State Police Criminal Investigation Division are leading the investigation at the request of the Pope County Sheriff’s Department.
Questions relating to the identity of law enforcement personnel, who first encountered Phillips, or their administrative status, should be directed to the local agencies where the officers are employed.
Upon completion of the investigation, state police special agents will submit an investigative file to the prosecuting attorney for consideration to determine whether use of deadly force by a law enforcement officer was justified as defined by state laws.