Two people have been arrested in connection with the murder of an airman who tried to foil a gas station robbery on Friday night in North Little Rock, Arkansas, but the last suspect is still at large.
The North Little Rock Police Department announced on Twitter Monday evening that 18-year-old Drequan Robinson was arrested in the murder of 23-year-old Senior Airman Shawn McKeough Jr., on charges of capital murder and aggravated robbery. On Tuesday morning, North Little Rock police said they had arrested Keith Harris Jr., 18, for his role in McKeough’s death. Harris did not enter the store, according to police.
McKeough, an aerial delivery operations specialist for the 19th Logistics Readiness Squadron at Little Rock Air Force Base in Arkansas, was killed when he tried to stop two people who tried to rob the Valero Big Red gas station and convenience store, which is about 13 miles southwest of the base.
The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette newspaper reported Tuesday that a probable cause affidavit filed in district court said McKeough tackled one of the robbers before the second shot him in the head. Robinson is accused of being the robber who shot McKeough, who died at the scene, the Democrat-Gazette said.
The North Little Rock police said on Twitter that Harris had admitted to being a passenger inside the vehicle, and being aware the robbery would occur, but he did not enter the gas station/convenience store and actually take part in the robbery. Police said they are still looking for the second robber, who wore a panda hat during the robbery.
Sen. Tom Cotton, R-Arkansas, on Tuesday released a statement mourning McKeough’s death.
“Called by duty, Shawn McKeough Jr. lost his life doing exactly what he volunteered and trained to do: protecting his fellow citizens from danger,” Cotton said. “We mourn his death and grieve with his family, yet we also celebrate his life, his courage and his service. May God welcome Shawn into His loving embrace and comfort his family.”
Stephen Losey is the air warfare reporter for Defense News. He previously covered leadership and personnel issues at Air Force Times, and the Pentagon, special operations and air warfare at Military.com. He has traveled to the Middle East to cover U.S. Air Force operations.