Local outstanding law enforcement highlighted at annual ceremony

Outstanding law enforcement officers for each Arkansas county were recognized by Attorney General Leslie Rutledge during the 2020 Law Enforcement Officer of the Year Luncheon.

At the event, Rutledge announced Fayetteville Police Department’s Sergeant James Jennings, Corporal Seay-Peter Floyd and Officer Natalie Eucce as the Law Enforcement Officers of the Year.

Following Arkansas Health Department guidelines, law enforcement from across the state attended the 18th annual awards ceremony honoring an outstanding law enforcement official from each of Arkansas’s 75 counties.

The 2020 Law Enforcement Officers of the Year recipients, Sergeant Jennings, Corporal Floyd and Officer Eucce, were recognized for an incident that occurred on Dec. 7, 2019, when Officer Stephen Carr was sitting in his patrol unit outside of the Fayetteville Police Department.

Officer Carr was waiting on his partner, Officer Eucce, who was inside the police department speaking with one of her supervisors, Sergeant Jennings. A suspect approached from the rear of the patrol vehicle and without provocation or warning and shot the Fayetteville officer.

Corporal Floyd was inside the police department and heard the shots being fired in the parking lot. Corporal Floyd looked out the window and observed the suspect shooting at Officer Carr’s vehicle, as he walked through the parking lot. Without hesitation and with no regard for his own safety, Corporal Floyd immediately exited the police department and confronted the armed suspect. Corporal Floyd fired his handgun, as the suspect moved to a position of cover.

Officer Eucce and Sergeant Jennings also heard the shots being fired. They immediately responded to assist Corporal Floyd. All three officers ran towards the threat to engage the suspect. The suspect hid in a dark alleyway alongside the police department. The three officers moved with precision and sound tactics which gave them a tactical advantage, when they located the suspect hiding in the alleyway. The suspect emerged from the alleyway and advanced on the officers still armed. Corporal Floyd and Officer Eucce fired striking the suspect multiple times. They then attempted life-saving measures, but the suspect died at the scene. Other responding officers attempted life-saving measures on Officer Carr, however, he succumbed to his injuries and died at the scene.

Local County Officers of the Year include

– Special Agent Jackie Stinnett, Arkansas State Police, from Baxter County,

– Special Agent Buster Rinks, Arkansas State Police, from Boone County,

– Corporal Jason Hooks, Arkansas State Police, from Fulton County,

– Sergeant Kyle Moody, Arkansas Department of Correction, from Izard County,

– Corporal Tim Davenport, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, from Marion County,

– Senior Corporal Mike Thomas, Arkansas State Police, from Newton County,

– Sex Offender Coordinator Cari Seaton, Searcy County Sheriff’s Office, from Searcy County, and

– Corporal Chad Cruce, Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, from Stone County.

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