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At least 3 dead after knife attack on Arkansas police officer, authorities say

At least 3 dead after knife attack on Arkansas police
officer, authorities say 1

FORT SMITH, Ark. — Three people are dead and a police officer is recovering from surgery following a knife attack in northwest Arkansas, authorities said Sunday.

The incident occurred Sunday in Fort Smith, located about 160 miles northwest of Little Rock. In an afternoon news conference, Fort Smith Police Chief Danny Baker said officers were dispatched to a report of a disturbance fight with weapons at 6:20 a.m.  

Upon arrival, the unidentified officer found a man hitting another individual, identified as a 15-year-old boy, in the face and head with a brick. 

When told by the officer to stop, Christofer Conner, 40, appeared to comply but produced an edged weapon and sliced the officer in the throat and neck when the officer attempted to put Conner in restraints, Baker said.

The officer then fired two shots, killing Conner.

The boy, identified as Conner’s son, was pronounced dead at the hospital. He had sustained multiple stab wounds and blunt force trauma.

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Inside the home, police saw evidence of a violent attack and located the body of Julia Marie Moore who had suffered multiple stab wounds. A 5-year-old child, also found inside the house, was placed with relatives.

“I have no doubt our officer’s swift actions saved this young child’s life,” Baker said.

The officer was in surgery Sunday morning, Aric Mitchell, a spokesman for the Fort Smith Police Department, said. 

The injured officer will be placed on administrative leave. A second officer, who was not involved in the shooting, will also be placed on leave “pending post-critical incident treatment.”

“Fort Smith is a wonderful community and when unimaginable tragedies like this happen, they leave us scared, angry, frustrated, and for some, homeless,” Baker said. “It hurts us as much as it does each of you when an outcome like this is unavoidable.

“I’m thankful for officers, who are willing to put their lives on the line when evil threatens our community. I’m thankful for the medical team who took care of our officer and I’m thankful for a community that always pulls together when tragedy strikes.”

The department asked the Arkansas State Police to investigate. Bill Sadler, a spokesman for Arkansas State Police, said he could not immediately provide any additional information. 

Both Mitchell and Sadler said authorities may provide more information later Sunday afternoon.

Contributing: The Associated Press

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