The Arkansas State Police is investigating the use of deadly force by a Bentonville Police officer that resulted in the death of a 17-year-old on Friday night.
According to police, Dominick Matt of Bentonville was shot by a police officer after he allegedly brandished a handgun during the encounter. The officer was not injured.
Arkansas State Police special agents in the criminal investigation division have been assigned to the case following a request direct to the state police by authorities within the Bentonville Police Department.
On Friday night, the Bentonville Police officer was in the area of SW Briar Creek Avenue and Greenhouse Road looking for a suspect involved in the attempted robbery of a convenience store nearby.
At 11:23 p.m., according to police, Matt was seen walking in the area of the store and the officer approached him. During that encounter, police say, Matt allegedly brandished a firearm and it led the officer to shoot Matt.
Police say that while Matt is believed to have been the suspect involved in the Kum & Go Store robbery at 3610 SW Regional Airport Boulevard, and there will be documented information and evidence through the course of the night in the investigative file, the scope of the investigation is focused on the use of deadly force by a law enforcement officer as defined by state law.
The Arkansas State Police criminal investigation division will prepare an investigative file and present it to the Benton County prosecuting attorney, who will determine whether the use of deadly force by a law enforcement officer was consistent with state law.
An autopsy, which will be completed at the Arkansas State crime lab, will determine the manner and cause of Matt’s death. All evidence recovered during the investigation will be analyzed at the crime lab.
All inquiries regarding the officer involved shooting and administrative status of the officer involved should be directed at the Bentonville Police Department.
Friday night’s incident is the ninth officer involved shooting in 2019.