Police, parents speak about student suspected of murder arrested during school

Published: Sep. 16, 2022 at 5:56 PM CDT
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BLYTHEVILLE, Ark. (KAIT) - The search for a suspect in a Sunday, Sept. 11 shooting in Blytheville had the community on edge, but when parents found one of those suspects was arrested at school, many had safety concerns.

The Blytheville Police Department arrested a Blytheville High School student Wednesday, Sept. 14 for his role in a weekend shooting that left a man dead.

Chief Thompson said obviously it is not an ideal situation going into a school because you create a bit of a panic among students and parents.

However, in this case, there was nothing else they could have done.

“We don’t want to leave the student in the classroom for the rest of the day and hope nothing bad happens while he is still there,” Thompson said. “I mean once we know information and that student is in a classroom or on a campus we do need to try and act we do need to act as soon as we can.”

As he expected, when they arrested the student, taking him out of the school in handcuffs, a lot of parents were concerned, saying in situations like that, they want to be in the know.

“I feel good about the fact they are taking measures to keep the children safe with that, though I think myself as a parent and other parents, we want to be well informed,” said parent Larry McClellan.

Thompson explained in an ongoing investigation like this one, there are things they cannot tell the public, and every time there is a situation like this, people tend to jump to conclusions.

“One of the things we don’t want to do is create any undo panic,” he said. “Just about every time we are working with something like this social media is not a friend of the police the school or the students.”

McClellan said the situation was scary for both him and his child, but he is happy is know if this situation happens again, the school is prepared.

“They were able to bring him out without an incident, without anybody being hurt. Knowing there is reassurance that if anything happens in the future, they are equipped to handle it,” he said.

Another teen suspect was arrested in connection to the murder, but it is unclear if this was also a student of the high school.