Bond set for Clay Co. murder suspect

Clay County Shooting

CORNING, AR (KAIT) - UPDATE: Murder suspect Bryan Curtis appeared in court on Tuesday.

His bond was set at $500,000, according to Clay County Sheriff Terry Miller.

Curtis is due back in court on July 8 in Corning.

A man has been officially charged in the deadly shooting of a Corning man Sunday.

According to Second Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney Scott Ellington, Bryan Curtis will be charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of James Prater.

According to Clay County Sheriff Terry Miller, the shooting happened Sunday around 3:30 p.m. in the 800-block of 6th Street.

Corning police and Clay County sheriff's deputies responded to the incident.

According to Corning Police Chief Jimmy Leach, when officers arrived on scene they saw a white male in the street fatality shot.

Leach said the suspect, Curtis, and a woman were also on scene.

Leach told Region 8 News Curtis told officers he shot Prater, however he did not give a reason for shooting him.

Leach and Miller said the motive is unclear at this time because it seems the two men hardly knew each other.

"He gave no reasoning, supposedly the victim didn't really even know the suspect and vice versa," Leach said. "They didn't know each other."

Curtis is being held at the Clay County Detention Center.

The Clay County Sheriff's Department, Corning Police Department, and Arkansas State Police are investigating the shooting.

Leach told Region 8 News there has not been a shooting of this nature in Corning for the past four years and he said the last one similar to this was an officer-involved shooting.

Neighbors in the area were also shocked to hear about the shooting.

The Sheridan family said they were heading to the ball field when they saw police responding to the incident.

"We saw policeman and sheriffs," Donald Sheridan said. "And we saw the white sheet on the ground."

Carol Wilson was visiting her family this week and she said this used to be a quiet neighborhood.

"I thought 'oh my god this is not a safe neighborhood anymore.' It is always been a quiet town when I have come to visit," Wilson said.

Other neighbors told Region 8 News that although they are shocked this happened, they think it is an isolated incident and they still feel safe.

Sheriff Miller said Curtis will appear in court for a probable cause hearing Tuesday morning where his bond and next court date will be set.

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