A suspect in an earlier, unprovoked attack went after Blytheville, Arkansas rookie police officer Leann Norman in early April. In recent days, the local PD released the bodycam video and it showed Marzues Scott, 35, pouncing on the officer as she unsuccessfully tried to call for help on her radio.
After he landed a couple of punches to her face, she shot him once, then moments later, as he tried to press his attack further, she shot him again.
Thankfully, Officer Norman didn’t suffer serious physical injuries. The same can’t be said for Scott, however. He didn’t make it. The encounter starts at about the 1:50 mark in the video below.
Note how the suspect first hesitated when ordered to stop, and then again, when the officer ordered him to her squad car. The whole time, as he stood in front of her, it looks as though Scott is sizing up this officer and deciding whether or not he could overpower her to effect an escape.
When her radio failed to connect with the police network a couple of times, Scott realized he had his opportunity and her came at her. Given the close proximity and lack of obstacles between the two, in a fraction of a second, he was practically upon her before she could react.
Viewers can hear the near-panic in her voice as she orders him to “get back,” but by then it was too late. He punched her in the face a couple of times and ultimately, it took her nearly four seconds to bring her gun to bear upon the suspect and fire.
No doubt, it seemed like an eternity to Officer Norman. Then, as she’s called out “shots fired” on the radio, Mr. Scott was nearly able to counterattack, however she managed to get off a second shot, putting him face down.
WMC Action News 5 has some video from the earlier assault at the Dodge convenience store. There, Scott reportedly attacked the clerk without any provocation. The beating, captured on surveillance cameras, showed Scott savagely pounding the clerk, seriously injuring the young man.
In initial reports, the media referred to the attack on the officer as a “scuffle.”
From the San Francisco Chronicle:
Blytheville officer shoots, kills man during “scuffle”
BLYTHEVILLE, Ark. (AP) — Authorities are investigating a fatal officer-involved shooting at an inn in northeast Arkansas.
The Arkansas State Police said Monday they were looking into the death of 35-year-old Marzues Scott after he was shot and killed by a Blytheville police officer during a “scuffle.”
BLYTHEVILLE, Ark. – The Arkansas State Police (ASP) is investigating an overnight officer-involved shooting that left a suspect dead.
It happened after the officer was called to a disturbance around 11:30 p.m. Sunday at the Dodge’s convenience store (3605 South Division Street), says an ASP news release issued Monday.
Once at the scene of the disturbance the officer found the suspect, identified as Marzues Scott, 35, of Blytheville, across the street at the Deerfield Inn (1100 Kari Lane). Scott allegedly attacked the officer and during a scuffle, the officer shot Scott, who died later at the hospital. The officer received minor injuries during the incident.
Clearly, a suspect in a violent attack advancing upon a drawn gun is no “scuffle.” At grappling distance, it’s a life-and-death struggle for a deadly weapon.
WMC Action News reports that no charges will be filed against the officer.
Prosecutors say they are not going to prosecute Officer Norman, and Blythville police do not expect any disciplinary action.
Mr. Scott made the decision to attack an innocent convenience store clerk, then to follow up by going after a police officer. Unlike with the clerk, Scott profoundly underestimated her ability to fight back. And he died as a result.
Hopefully Officer Norman won’t suffer too much psychological trauma from putting down her attacker. Meanwhile, the residents of Blytheville should be happy their city is safer with one less violent criminal prowling the streets.