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Update: Sherwood Police Make Progress in Case of Body Found in Creek

A Sherwood man shot into the air to scare off burglars at his home. The next day a body was found in a creek on his land. <span style="font-weight: bold; color: #cc0000">Update: the Pulaski County Coroner has determined that Bryant Cross was indeed killed by gunfire.</span>

New Developments

Update: According to the Pulaski County Coroner, Bryant Cross did indeed die from from gunshot wounds. Cross was found dead in a creek last Tuesday evening. Earlier that morning a Sherwood man heard noises outside of his home. When he went to look, he saw two men -- one of them standing near his daughters' bedroom window.
 
Larry Staley says he fired in the air but never thought he hit anyone until Cross was found dead in the creek and the coroner confirmed he'd been shot.

Staley said, "I feel horrible for the family...his family has been here, I've talked with them.  Lloyd and his wife have all of my sympathy because I know how they have to hurt."

Staley says he no longer feels safe, and he's now trying to sell the home he grew up in.  He says all he wanted to do was protect his family.

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A new piece of the puzzle falls into place for Sherwood Police investigating a body found in a creek behind a Sherwood house. Investigators arrested a teenager they say was involved in an attempted theft at the house almost 12 hours before the discovery of the body.

According to police, the suspect arrested is not saying much, so they are relying on evidence at the scene and pending results of an autopsy of the man found dead. The homeowner says police need to be looking for a third man and while they are doing that, he is looking for a new home."

"I want out of here right now," Larry Staley said.

Staley says thieves have come to his home five times over two years. Although Sherwood Police arrested 18-year-old Lamarcus Dunn Wednesday for trespassing and attempted theft in the latest case, Staley says his family just isn't safe in their own home.

"Right now I'll take anything to get out of here. They're not safe here. We were safer in Belize," Staley said.

And to make matters worse, Staley says he believes there was a third man at house that night. He claims he fired warning shots because a white man was at his window. The man found dead in the creek and the man police arrested are both African American.

"We are following every lead we can. We are trying to canvas the area for other evidence of another person. We're also trying to talk to neighbors in the community," said Ryan Baker with Sherwood Police.

Staley says if his bullet killed the man in the creek, he's sorry for that but he's not sorry for protecting his family. "They brought it on me, I didn't go looking for them."

Staley says thieves have come to his home five times over two years. Although Sherwood Police arrested 18-year-old Lamarcus Dunn Wednesday for trespassing and attempted theft in the latest case, Staley says his family just isn't safe in their own home.

Previously Reported

Lamarcus Dunn
Lamarcus Dunn
A Sherwood man shot into the air to scare off burglars at his home. The next day, a body was found in a creek on his land. Now police and the homeowner are trying to figure out if those warning shots killed an 18-year-old man. 

Larry Staley says all he was trying to do that night was scare off the men he saw in his yard. He never planned to hurt anyone when he fired the shots and he hates to think that he may have taken someone's life. "I feel like I probably shot him because of where he's at. But I never saw him. I don't know how he got there."

The body of 18-year-old Bryant Cross was found face down in the creek behind Staley's home.

Staley heard a noise outside his home the previous night. He went to the backdoor and saw one man go into his garage and another at his daughter's bedroom window.

Staley says he screamed for the man to freeze. Then “I fired 5 or 6 times into the top of the pine tree out there with a .22 automatic pistol. He continued running to my neighbors where we have a creek.”

By that time Sherwood police were there. They searched the area but didn't find anything. The next day Staley's wife discovered the body in the creek.

Police aren't sure if one of Staley's bullets hit the man but Staley's praying he didn't. "I'm just hoping like heck he drowned because I hate the thought of taking a human life."

Staley says what he's puzzled about is how his wife, getting into her car, could see a body all the way across the yard in the creek when the night before police with search dogs couldn't see it.

Ryan Baker of the Sherwood Police said, “It's a low visibility area, and like I said, our officers were concentrating on what they saw and what the homeowner said with the suspects fleeing to the west. The body was found south.  We didn't have any reason to look in that area at that time."

Police say they caught up with the second man they believe was on Staley's property. They've questioned him but no charges have been filed so far.

The law for use of deadly force changed earlier this year. Previously, if you were outside your home, you had to retreat into your home before using deadly force. Now, if you're threatened with bodily harm anywhere on your property you can protect yourself.

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