According to Marion Police Chief Gary Kelley, two Marion police officers have been placed on paid leave pending an investigation into the officer-involved shooting death of a 16-year-old outside an emergency shelter for youths in Arkansas Tuesday night.
Police confirm they were called to the East Arkansas Youth Services at 104 Cypress Ave. around 7:08 p.m., but have not specified why they were called to the shelter.
According to their website, thenon-profit shelter “provides positive alternatives to institutionalization” for at-risk children.
The director of the facility did confirm that the victim, identified as Aries Clark, had received services previously, but was not a current resident.
Via Facebook, a county judge stated Clark was “believed to have been a resident that left the center a couple days ago and returned [Tuesday] night.”
Arkansas Online reports:
Two sources said Clark was a resident of the facility and left without permission earlier this week. He returned to the center Tuesday evening and tried to get back inside but a door was locked.
In an annual report of East Arkansas Youth Services’ fiscal 2015-16, released in February, the center saw 44 “serious incidents” during the period, a 5 percent increase over the previous fiscal year. “Serious incidents” included residents leaving the facility without permission, arrests, medical emergencies, and suicidal threats and gestures.
“We also request your prayers for our operations and specifically for all individuals and entities involved in this incident. In turn, we also offer our sincere prayers for all affected by this event,” the shelter’s executive director and CEO Madelyn Keith wrote on Facebook.
Although officials have not said whether Clark was armed, his cousin Chris Clark told reporters that “he held a BB gun in the air, and they just took him down on sight.”
The Arkansas State Police will continue their investigation into the officer-involved shooting. We will continue to bring you information on this case at it becomes available.