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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Prosecutors have declined to file charges against a Little Rock police officer who fatally shot a man by firing at least 15 times into the windshield as the car was in motion.

Pulaski County Prosecutor Larry Jegley announced Friday that Officer Charles Starks won’t face charges in the Feb. 22 shooting of 30-year-old Bradley Blackshire, who was black. Police say Starks, who is white, was responding to a call after a detective confirmed the car Blackshire was driving was stolen.

In a video of the incident released last month, various angles showed Starks on the vehicle’s hood shooting at Blackshire through the windshield as the car continued to move.

Little Rock police say Starks is still being paid but not performing any departmental duties while they conduct an internal investigation.

The decision was detailed in a four-page letter from Prosecuting Attorney Larry Jegley to Little Rock Police Chief Keith Humphrey.

Letter From Larry Jegley to… by on Scribd

An attorney for Little Rock police officer Charles Starks says that his client has been cleared by the Pulaski County prosecuting attorney and will not face criminal charges for the fatal shooting of Bradley Blackshire.

On February 22, Blackshire was shot and killed by Starks during a traffic stop near the intersection of 12th Street and Rodney Parham Road.

In dashcam footage released to the media, Starks asked Blackshire to exit the car. Starks continued to tell Blackshire to exit the car while the car moved forward. 

That’s when Starks shot at the driver side of car while in front of the moving vehicle. Starks shot several more times while on the hood of the car, firing more than 10 shots.

Attorney Robert Newcombe said he “felt from the beginning that there was no criminal conduct.”

“It’s unfortunate that a man had to die, but he made a choice,” Newcombe said. “If he had just gotten out of the car like he was ordered, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.”

Newcombe said Starks is “relieved and pleased” with the decision.

In a letter to Chief Humphrey, Pulaski County Prosecuting Attorney Larry Jegley said the woman in the car with Blackshire told police that he was “digging around in his pocket” where she said he normally keeps his gun. Starks says he saw Blackshire move his hand down to put the car in gear, but said he “couldn’t tell if Mr. Blackshire was reaching for something.”

The woman also reportedly told police officers that Blackshire told her he shot “at the police on a previous occasion.”

Jegley said that Starks had “reasonable cause to believe that” Blackshire committed a felony.

“Even though Starks is backing up, the car does bump Starks before a shot is ever fired,” Jegley said.

Jegley said in the letter that Starks said officers are “trained to seek cover behind their vehicle’s engine block to avoid getting shot.” Starks explained that he was terrified Blackshire had a gun and Starks believed the “only safe place for him to take cover was behind his vehicle.”

“Without question, Mr. Blackshire’s vehicle is a deadly weapon,” Jegley concluded. “It is also obvious that it was moving in Stark’s direction. It will be argued that the vehicle was moving too slowly to be a threat. But the fact that it is moving at all indicates that Mr. Blackshire had his foot on the gas (at the very least it was not on the brake).”

Jegley said Blackshire’s “use of deadly force” was “as imminent as a stepped on accelerator and no different from a pulled trigger.”

Police reportedly found a loaded .45 caliber handgun inside the vehicle and .45 caliber cartridges were found in two of Blackshire’s pockets.

READ | Little Rock Mayor Scott announces LRPD, FBI investigating fatal officer-involved shooting

On Tuesday, a group protesting the officer-involved shooting spoke with Chief Humphrey on the issue. Organizers called for Starks’ termination from the police force as well as the use of body cameras by LRPD.

“I just pray that there are charges filed against the officer that killed my son because we feel that it was unjust,” said Kim Blackshire-Lee, the mother of Bradley Blackshire.

In a press release, the Little Rock Police Department said an internal investigation has been completed and will be delivered to Chief Keith Humphrey. The final decision will take “approximately” two weeks.

We will continue to update this article with new information.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark — (AP) – Medical marijuana sales in Arkansas are set to begin around May 12 as cultivators plan to begin harvesting the plant in the coming days and regulators finish the approval process for state’s first dispensaries.

Department of Finance and Administration Spokesman Scott Hardin said Friday the final decision for licensing Doctor’s Orders RX in Hot Springs, which would be the state’s first operational dispensary, will be made within the next two weeks.

He said another dispensary in Hot Springs, Green Springs Medical, should be ready for final inspection in the next week or so. Arkansas voters approved medical marijuana’s legalization in 2016.

With around 10,500 Arkansans licensed for medical marijuana use and only one cultivator ready to harvest, many are concerned that the initial supply might not meet demand.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark — (AP) – Medical marijuana sales in Arkansas are set to begin around May 12 as cultivators plan to begin harvesting the plant in the coming days and regulators finish the approval process for state’s first dispensaries.

Department of Finance and Administration Spokesman Scott Hardin said Friday the final decision for licensing Doctor’s Orders RX in Hot Springs, which would be the state’s first operational dispensary, will be made within the next two weeks.

He said another dispensary in Hot Springs, Green Springs Medical, should be ready for final inspection in the next week or so. Arkansas voters approved medical marijuana’s legalization in 2016.

With around 10,500 Arkansans licensed for medical marijuana use and only one cultivator ready to harvest, many are concerned that the initial supply might not meet demand.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark — (AP) – Medical marijuana sales in Arkansas are set to begin around May 12 as cultivators plan to begin harvesting the plant in the coming days and regulators finish the approval process for state’s first dispensaries.

Department of Finance and Administration Spokesman Scott Hardin said Friday the final decision for licensing Doctor’s Orders RX in Hot Springs, which would be the state’s first operational dispensary, will be made within the next two weeks.

He said another dispensary in Hot Springs, Green Springs Medical, should be ready for final inspection in the next week or so. Arkansas voters approved medical marijuana’s legalization in 2016.

With around 10,500 Arkansans licensed for medical marijuana use and only one cultivator ready to harvest, many are concerned that the initial supply might not meet demand.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark — (AP) – Medical marijuana sales in Arkansas are set to begin around May 12 as cultivators plan to begin harvesting the plant in the coming days and regulators finish the approval process for state’s first dispensaries.

Department of Finance and Administration Spokesman Scott Hardin said Friday the final decision for licensing Doctor’s Orders RX in Hot Springs, which would be the state’s first operational dispensary, will be made within the next two weeks.

He said another dispensary in Hot Springs, Green Springs Medical, should be ready for final inspection in the next week or so. Arkansas voters approved medical marijuana’s legalization in 2016.

With around 10,500 Arkansans licensed for medical marijuana use and only one cultivator ready to harvest, many are concerned that the initial supply might not meet demand.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark — (AP) – Medical marijuana sales in Arkansas are set to begin around May 12 as cultivators plan to begin harvesting the plant in the coming days and regulators finish the approval process for state’s first dispensaries.

Department of Finance and Administration Spokesman Scott Hardin said Friday the final decision for licensing Doctor’s Orders RX in Hot Springs, which would be the state’s first operational dispensary, will be made within the next two weeks.

He said another dispensary in Hot Springs, Green Springs Medical, should be ready for final inspection in the next week or so. Arkansas voters approved medical marijuana’s legalization in 2016.

With around 10,500 Arkansans licensed for medical marijuana use and only one cultivator ready to harvest, many are concerned that the initial supply might not meet demand.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark — (AP) – Medical marijuana sales in Arkansas are set to begin around May 12 as cultivators plan to begin harvesting the plant in the coming days and regulators finish the approval process for state’s first dispensaries.

Department of Finance and Administration Spokesman Scott Hardin said Friday the final decision for licensing Doctor’s Orders RX in Hot Springs, which would be the state’s first operational dispensary, will be made within the next two weeks.

He said another dispensary in Hot Springs, Green Springs Medical, should be ready for final inspection in the next week or so. Arkansas voters approved medical marijuana’s legalization in 2016.

With around 10,500 Arkansans licensed for medical marijuana use and only one cultivator ready to harvest, many are concerned that the initial supply might not meet demand.

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — Medical marijuana sales in Arkansas are set to begin around May 12 as cultivators plan to begin harvesting the plant in the coming days and regulators finish the approval process for state’s first dispensaries.

Department of Finance and Administration Spokesman Scott Hardin said the final decision for licensing Doctor’s Orders RX in Hot Springs, which would be the state’s first operational dispensary, will be made within the next two weeks. The dispensary has been inspected by both the Alcoholic Beverage Control, which regulates medical marijuana, and the fire marshal and is awaiting final approval.

Three of the five licensed cultivators have begun growing, Hardin said, with Bold Team in Cotton Plant expecting to have their first harvest ready to be sold by May 12. Bold Team’s cultivators expect to have about 200 pounds of product dried and cured for an initial harvest, spokesman Robert Lercher says.

Two other cultivators, Natural State Medicinals Cultivation in White Hall and Osage Creek Cultivation in Berryville, have also begun growing, Hardin said, and both expect to have their first harvest by summer. Hardin said the final two cultivators have broken ground and are constructing facilities.

With around 10,500 Arkansas residents licensed for medical marijuana use — and 40,000 expected when all licenses are issued — but only one cultivator ready to harvest, many are concerned that the initial supply might not meet demand.

“My biggest concern is that there’s going to be shortages right off the bat,” David Couch, the attorney who wrote the medical marijuana amendment Arkansas voters approved in 2016, said. “They’re going to run out of product and people are going to be disappointed and back to zero again,” he said.

Hardin said another dispensary in Hot Springs, Green Springs Medical, should be ready for final inspection in the next week or so. He also said “a couple” other dispensaries have indicated they’re nearing completion.

“The scenario we anticipate is by the end of May likely having three to five dispensaries operational with that number continuing to grow as we enter June, July and August,” Hardin said.

Green Springs Medical’s owner, Dragan Vicentic, said he thinks his dispensary is “90% of the way there,” and hopes to have a final inspection the first week of May.

Vicentic said because product availability is expected on a Sunday, Green Springs Medical will likely open its doors Monday, May 13. He said he expects product to sell out the first day.

“I’ve had people saying, ‘Hey, I’m driving three hours and I’m going to spend the night at a hotel there the night before,'” Vicentic said.

Vicentic also said he’s not sure what he’ll have in stock, or how the product will be priced, though he does expect to have products available to vape and smoke.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark — (AP) – Medical marijuana sales in Arkansas are set to begin around May 12 as cultivators plan to begin harvesting the plant in the coming days and regulators finish the approval process for state’s first dispensaries.

Department of Finance and Administration Spokesman Scott Hardin said Friday the final decision for licensing Doctor’s Orders RX in Hot Springs, which would be the state’s first operational dispensary, will be made within the next two weeks.

He said another dispensary in Hot Springs, Green Springs Medical, should be ready for final inspection in the next week or so. Arkansas voters approved medical marijuana’s legalization in 2016.

With around 10,500 Arkansans licensed for medical marijuana use and only one cultivator ready to harvest, many are concerned that the initial supply might not meet demand.