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Dashcam Released of Arkansas Police Slayings

Dashcam Released of Arkansas Police Slayings

An Arkansas Wildlife officer takes cover during a shootout in Crittenden County, Arkansas.

The Commercial Appeal via YellowBrix

July 01, 2010

JONESBORO, Ark. — From the cab of his FedEx truck, Vincent Brown had a bird’s-eye view of the shooting that killed two West Memphis police officers on May 20.

A short video clip from an officer’s dashboard camera released Wednesday shows 16-year-old Joe Kane in a red T-shirt slowly open the passenger-side door of a 1994 white Plymouth Voyager van and wield an AK-47 assault rifle. Within seconds. he vanishes from the camera’s view.

But Brown’s account, which is part of a 240-page preliminary report from the Arkansas State Police, fills in the gaps.

The truck driver’s rig was parked behind the two police cars on the off ramp at mile marker 275 on Interstate 40.

Brown couldn’t hear the shots because of his tractor- trailer’s engine. But he told investigators the chilling scene he witnessed:

It began, he said, when a “potbelly guy” driving the van – Jerry Kane Jr. – suddenly pushed Officer Bill Evans down an embankment and into a ditch.

Then Joe Kane – “a skinny kid” as Brown identified him – came out of nowhere with what appeared to be an automatic weapon with a long clip. He began to fire.

Brown said Evans tried to draw his weapon with one hand and extended the other in front of himself as if to say: Stop.

Sgt. Brandon Paudert, who’d arrived as backup for Evans, took cover behind his partner’s Chevy Tahoe. But it appeared that Joe “timed it just right” to shoot Paudert in the head, Brown told investigators, and then stood over his body as the officer lay in the roadway.

Both Kanes got back in the van. The video clip shows Joe firing four more rounds of the AK-47 out of the van’s passenger-side window in the direction of Evans as his father slowly drove away.

A crime-scene report said Paudert lay on his back, head pointed west, feet toward the east, with his semi-automatic weapon in his right hand. He had a “large, gaping wound extending from his chin to the top of his skull.”

Evans was taken to the hospital where he was later pronounced dead. His bullet-proof vest, shredded by gunfire, lay in the ditch along with his handheld police radio.

Mike Walden, prosecuting attorney for the 2nd Judicial District in Arkansas, said Wednesday that officers involved in a second shootout that killed the Kanes 90 minutes later in the Walmart parking lot, were justified and that he didn’t anticipate filing any charges.

Police recovered 144 shell casings from various weapons — pistols, rifles and shotguns — at the Walmart crime scene.

Some officers told state police officials that Joe Kane still had his finger on the trigger of his weapon when his body was pulled from the van.

Crittenden County Sheriff Dick Busby and Chief Deputy W.A. Wren were wounded in the second firefight. Busby recovered from a bullet wound to the shoulder.

Wren has been in a rehabilitation center in Jonesboro since his release from the Regional Medical Center at Memphis. He could be released as soon as Friday.

Raw Video: First Shootout in Which West Memphis Officers Were Killed

Raw Video: Second Shootout in Walmart Parking Lot in Which Suspects Were Killed

Prosecuting attorney Walden said if the Kanes had survived they would have faced capital murder charges in the deaths of Evans and Paudert.

The investigation is ongoing because material from the FBI and the Arkansas State Crime Lab has yet to be reviewed. Walden released the preliminary report because of the amount of media inquiries and public interest in the case.

Investigators determined that Joe Kane wielded the AK-47 while his father had a Taurus 45/LC 410 revolver.

The evidence log in the preliminary report shows that police recovered ammunition from the Kanes’ van along with a marijuana brick, rolling papers, a scale and screens with burnt marijuana cigarettes behind the passenger seat. They also found hotel receipts, CDs titled “Banks Do Not Loan Money” and $301, among other items.

West Memphis Police Chief Bob Paudert, Brandon’s father, took his wife and Brandon’s family to Florida this week to escape the media coverage of the investigative report’s release.

He hasn’t seen the dash camera video or read the report. A state investigator briefed him on a few details.

“I have mixed emotions about looking at the video,” he said. "I probably need to as a chief, but as a father it’s going to be very difficult.

“It’s the last few minutes of Brandon and Bill’s life. Everyone keeps saying I’m strong, but I’m not strong. This has had a major impact on me.”

Staff reporters Cindy Wolff, Jody Callahan and Kevin McKenzie contributed to this report.


To see more of The Commercial Appeal or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.commercialappeal.com.

Copyright © 2010, The Commercial Appeal, Memphis, Tenn.

Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

For more information about the content services offered by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services (MCT), visit www.mctinfoservices.com, e-mail services@mctinfoservices.com, or call 866-280-5210 (outside the United States, call +1 312-222-4544).


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  • 3a_037elguapo_max50

    Consawbo

    about 4 years ago

    310 Comments

    Rest in Peace Brothers... We have the Watch...

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Anonymous

    about 4 years ago

    mpd_943 said it best!

  • Monday_march_3_police_blotter_max50

    fraustr1

    about 4 years ago

    532 Comments

    R.I.P brothers my prayers are with you and your families.
    Great job, that wildlife officer is a hero.

    Both them perps will burn in hell, damn scumbags!!! I hate seeing this happen!!!!!!!!
    Please, stay safe out there.

  • 4076_1_sbl_max600_max50

    Grafton817

    about 4 years ago

    734 Comments

    Were there tactical errors in the original traffic stop, maybe. All I will say about them is that I will learn from them and I will apply what I learn when I am on the streets. What happened is a terrible tragedy. RIP brothers. And outstanding job by the wildlife officer. Your squad is a weapon too and can be used in deadly force! My prayers to the family, friends and co-workers of the fallen officers.

  • Chris_and_i_in_uniform_max50

    JP503

    about 4 years ago

    7616 Comments

    God speed to the officers injured at the Walmart parking lot. RIP to our fallen brothers. Good job wildlife officer, you did what need to be done.

  • Tlusa_max50

    rsmith6322

    about 4 years ago

    1088 Comments

    I had to go to another site to see the video-issues with my work computer. That Wildlife Officer is a true warrior. We should all hope to do so well, in his place. I hate to say anything negative about a fallen brother, but the first officer made a few tactical errors that had he not made, would have increased his chances.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Anonymous

    about 4 years ago

    After I wrote about both Officers I felt bad.Ones son was only 3 yrs old and will never know his father.It was wrong the way they had to leave this world and for no reason at all.Life sometimes is just not right.God Bless The both of You and Your Family and Friends for having to live without you.RIP.

  • Alancopphoto_max600_max50

    abridges_2506

    about 4 years ago

    136 Comments

    It is so difficult to watch the last moments of a officers life, that kid waited for the right moment, COWARD. Great job in locating the Murdering father and Son. I feel bad for the family of the two officers.

  • Jack-sparrow-pirates-of-the-caribbean_max50

    Tetra021

    about 4 years ago

    492 Comments

    Rest in peace officers!
    I love how the wildlife officer handled the situation. It took a lot of guts to do what he did and he may have saved so many more lives. I am grateful that these two criminals are done for.

  • Img_0997_-_copy_max50

    rebelranger

    about 4 years ago

    108 Comments

    From a retired wildlife officer, that was a great job in stopping those perps sir. You are an outstanding officer and that selfless act lets the public know we are not just duck cops. You are a hero in my mind as well because you probably saved more officers from injury or death as well as protecting the countless citizens that must have been in the area. Awesome job to all involved.

  • Thi_seal_max50

    mpd_943

    about 4 years ago

    2486 Comments

    That Wildlife officer must have gotten a dump truck to replace his pick-up. He needs something that big to haul his balls in, that was gutsy! That is the way to press the fight! Rest in Peace to our fallen Brothers! Our prayers go out to your families, friends, and co-workers!

  • Img_69495570860500_max50

    Walker83

    about 4 years ago

    346 Comments

    My prayers are with the families of the 2 fallen officers. May God comfort you. Good job on the part of all the other officers involved on taking out the treat. And to the Wildlife officer mad props...and “they” must be made of steel!! Although definitely a risky move....it was one that most likely kept more officers or citizens from being wounded or killed.

  • Img00039_max50

    bfriskey

    about 4 years ago

    980 Comments

    Open season on LE..How many times do we need to say it before the courts take some meaningful actions.. Godspeed Officers...Condolences to Family and Friends... A day of loss not soon forgotten

  • 100_7432_max50

    petecoolcattt

    about 4 years ago

    652 Comments

    Watching these video clips just makes me shiver. The lives lost on that horrible day - both good and bad - bring me to tears. Tears of pain for the valiant Warrior brothers who were slain without mercy and tears of joy for the scum who were delivered Divine Justice that day by brave men and women who represented truth and honour. May God Bless you all.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Anonymous

    about 4 years ago

    BUMP USLawman1983, chiefdennis, and gammyland

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