State Police file on Little Rock police chief who shot suspect on New Years Eve submitted to prosecutors
The investigation file regarding Little Rock Police Chief Keith Humphrey, who fired his gun at a suspect on New Years Eve, was submitted to the Pulaski County District Attorney’s Office on February 10, said an Arkansas State Police spokesperson on Wednesday.
When contacted by email, state police spokesman Bill Sadler declined to offer further comment beyond confirming that the filing was submitted last week.
“The Arkansas State Police does not acknowledge or discuss specific recordings that are part of [of] an investigative file while the case remains in an active state,” Sadler wrote in an email.
District Attorney Larry Jegley for the Sixth Judicial District, which encompasses Pulaski and Perry counties, also declined to comment.
“We do not discuss the status of cases while they are in process or under review,” he said via email in response to the same questions as the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. asked Sadler. “Rest assured that we will update you as soon as possible.”
When asked if Sadler’s statement that the dossier was submitted last week was accurate, Jegley wrote, “Of course.”
Twin investigations relating to Humphrey have been launched following the New Year’s Eve incident.
Arkansas State Police officers were tasked with investigating his use of force and determining whether Humphrey had complied with state law, and submitted the case to the office of the prosecutor for a final decision.
Additionally, officials said the Little Rock Police Department will conduct a separate internal investigation into the incident. The internal investigation will likely assess whether Humphrey’s actions violated department rules.
It is still unclear whether the internal investigation is complete.
According to authorities’ account of the Dec. 31 incident, Humphrey was on patrol, as were other senior police officials, due to an unarmed approach on New Year’s Eve.
In the evening, the police chief encountered a disturbance outside an Asher Avenue gas station where an armed suspect opened fire, injuring one person, authorities said.
Humphrey fired his service weapon, apparently missing the suspect, who was unharmed when arrested that evening.
The suspect has been identified as Taz Hayes, 29. She pleaded innocent to a first-degree battery charge in the incident.
Little Rock referred the investigation into Humphrey’s use of force, as well as the investigation into the altercation involving Hayes, to the state police for the outside agency to pursue.
At a press conference Wednesday to discuss the city’s efforts to reduce violent crime, Mayor Frank Scott Jr. declined to provide information when asked about investigations related to Humphrey.
Scott said he was not free to discuss it, referring to an “ongoing process”.
Humphrey spent just under two weeks on administrative leave following the Dec. 31 incident. Deputy Chief Crystal Young-Haskins served as Acting Chief of Police during the interim period.
The police chief returned to active duty on January 13 with the approval of Scott and Young-Haskins, although the state police investigation and internal department investigation were still ongoing.
A request for comment emailed to Little Rock police officials regarding the status of the internal investigation involving Humphrey was not returned Wednesday night.