Former Washington County deputy charged with murder pleads not guilty

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — A former Washington County deputy charged with murder pleaded not guilty on Wednesday, according to court documents.

Stevon Grindstaff, 28, was arrested by Arkansas State Police on March 11 on first-degree murder and aggravated assault charges after a man died during a pursuit in December 2023.

The Washington County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release on Dec. 3, 2023, Grindstaff attempted to stop a truck driven by Scottie Stacy, 57, near Beav-O-Rama Road and Blue Springs Road in northeast Washington County, but Stacy reportedly did not stop.

A chase then ensued where Stacy reportedly drove through a fence down a dead-end road before stopping, the release said.

“When the deputy got out of the patrol car to approach the suspect driver, the driver began rapidly accelerating in reverse toward the deputy and the patrol car, striking the patrol car,” the initial report from WCSO said.

Former Washington County deputy arrested, charged with murder

An affidavit filed on March 12, which has since been sealed, said WCSO provided body camera and in-car footage of the incident, refuting that Stacy drove in reverse toward Grindstaff.

The affidavit said, “Recordings show Deputy Grindstaff placing his patrol vehicle’s driver-side front bumper at the passenger-side back bumper of Stacy’s vehicle as the vehicles stop.”

It later said Grindstaff fired “multiple times at the vehicle” as it drove away from him.

Sheriff Jay Cantrell asked Arkansas State Police to investigate the incident. Grindstaff was arrested after a special prosecutor to the case charged him with murder and assault.

Grindstaff has a court date set for May 28.

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