LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – An arrest warrant for Battery 3rd (misdemeanor) has been filed against a former Little Rock Police Department officer six months after an officer-involved shooting.
The July 19, 2017 incident happened outside a Chick-fil-A restaurant near Chenal Parkway on the city’s west side and sent a shoplifting and carjacking suspect to the hospital.
According to information released after the incident, Officer Ralph Breshears had fired his service weapon at a suspect two other times in his career.
The suspect who was wounded, Rudy Avila, 23, is serving time as a habitual offender in a robbery, residential burglary and breaking/entering case. He is incarcerated at the East Arkansas Region state prison at Brickeys.
Avila had been booked into the Pulaski County Jail after being shot by police and was facing multiple charges that include robbery, criminal attempt to commit capital murder, escape, theft, and violating parole.
Click here to read the arrest warrant for Breshears.
Official LRPD news release issued Jan. 22, 2018:
On July 19, 2017 at approximately 1317 hours, Officers of the Little Rock Police Department
responded to Home Depot located at 12610 Chenal Parkway, in reference to a report of a shoplifter in custody. Upon making contact with Lost Prevention for the business, Officers took Rudy Avila (W/M, 08/08/1994) into custody and placed him in handcuffs.
During the course of escorting Mr. Avila from the business, he was able to free himself from the escorting officer’s grasp and escape on foot through the parking lot. As he fled, Mr. Avila was able to free one hand from the handcuffs.
Officers pursued Mr. Avila to the Chick-fil-A which is located at 12500 W. Markham Street. Due to its proximity to Home Depot, the two businesses share a portion of the same parking lot. In attempt to escape the officers, Mr. Avila physically forced a female patron of the Chick-fil-A from her vehicle, took control of the vehicle and attempted to drive away from the scene. Officer Ralph Breshears, who was one of the officers who took Mr. Avila into custody, fired upon the moving vehicle striking Mr. Avila. A bystander who witnessed the incident then blocked the exit and prevented Mr. Avila’s escape.
Mr. Avila was subsequently taken into custody, administered first aid, and transported to an area hospital where he was treated for non-life threatening injuries.
Consistent with departmental policy when officers use deadly force, the department initiated both criminal and internal investigations. Upon completion of the criminal investigation, the case file was forwarded to the Pulaski County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office for review on October 20, 2017. That office concluded that former Officer Breshears was negligent in his actions and advised that he would be charged with Third Degree Battery.
The department is in the process of attempting to serve an arrest warrant on Breshears who retired in December of 2017.