• Charges dropped against teen who was arrested for Arkansas officer's murder

    Updated:

    Charges have been dropped against a teen who was charged with the murder of an off-duty Arkansas police officer.

    Photos of the slain officer

    Tuesday morning, the West Memphis Police Department announced the arrest of Bobby Patterson.

    The 19-year-old was charged with capital murder, five counts of terroristic acts, four counts of criminal attempted murder, among others.

    Less than three hours later, the department announced most of the charges against Patterson had been dropped.


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    Police said the original charges were based on an eyewitness testimony that identified Patterson as the suspect who fired the shot that killed Oliver Johnson, who was an officer with the Forrest City Police Department.

    After being arrested, Patterson provided an alibi to investigators. Police said that alibi was verified, and it “became clear that the eyewitnesses identification could not be correct.”

    Patterson is still charged with possession of a firearm by a felon.

    Related: Beloved police officer shot and killed inside his West Memphis home

    Oliver Johnson was sitting in the 'gaming room' in his apartment on Saturday when someone outside the home started shooting. Several bullets entered the residence. One of them struck Johnson and took his life.

    The Forrest City Arkansas Police Department is speaking for the first time about the loss of Officer Oliver Johnson who was killed over the weekend in West Memphis.

    Forrest City Police Chief Deon Lee said the last few days have been rough after the loss of one of his youngest officers.

    “A lot of guys are dealing with hurt, dealing with a lot of sadness. Officer Johnson was not only my officer, he was our brother,” Lee said.

    Lee told FOX13 Johnson joined the Forrest City Police Department in 2015 and had a bright future in law enforcement.

    “It’s kind of heart breaking to learn the guy we initially had is no longer in custody,” Lee said.

    Chief Lee said he’s confident law enforcement in West Memphis will not let the gunman slip through the hands of justice.

    “Since the crime happened in West Memphis we definitely will rely on West Memphis and their resources to solve this case,” Lee said.

    Check back for updates.

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