Shortly after two o'clock Tuesday afternoon, Devin Pearson, 24, was stopped by ASP Trooper (Corporal) Kip Stringer along U.S. Highway 65 near Bee Branch.
The ASP says Pearson refused to comply with a request from the trooper to get out of the vehicle and took off in the pick-up truck he was driving as Corporal Stringer tried to open the driver's door. Corporal Stringer was knocked to the ground but was not hurt.
Deputies with the Van Buren County Sheriff's Office and officers of the 20th Judicial District Drug Task Force caught up with Pearson as he drove south along Highway 65 towards Damascus. During a short pursuit Pearson reportedly fired a handgun at the officers who were closing in on his truck. At least one deputy returned gunfire and a bullet struck Pearson's truck.
Witnesses reported that as officers pulled up alongside the truck, Pearson used his gun to take his own life.
Pearson was pronounced dead after being taken to the Ozark Medical Center in Clinton. Pearson's body and evidence from the shooting scene have been submitted to the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory for analysis.
Special Agents of the Arkansas State Police Criminal Investigation Division are leading the investigation which will be submitted to Prosecutor Cody Hiland for review.