By Tammy Moore Teague
On Monday night, May 7th, an off duty Hackett reserve officer responded to a disturbance off West Highway 10 near Hackett. When the officer arrived he was met with gunfire, and the officer returned fire. Additional agencies arrived on scene and began setting up command of the scene.
We now know the name of that suspect. Robert Boden, 48, was shot and killed as he attempted to flee the residence of Sunny Hill Place in Hackett. Boden, as Chief Deputy Hobe Runion reported, “was not someone they had trouble from in the past.” Runion went on to say that he believed it began as a domestic disturbance. Sebastian County SWAT was on scene with an armored vehicle and attempted to negotiate with the suspect. The suspect, however, was unresponsive. “It was an ongoing, dangerous situation,” Runion said.
Four, including the suspects wife, were evacuated during the incident that lasted almost four hours. Boden continued to fire upon law enforcement. He made an attempt to leave the scene in a pickup truck. Officers were able to disable it and the he exited the vehicle armed. It was at this time the officers shot and killed the Boden.
Three Sebastian County deputies were injured from shot gun pellets during the shoot out. The names of those deputies have now been released. Those veteran officers are: Corporal Sean Wallace, who is in the special services division-civil process, search and rescue activities and supervision of sex offender registration; Corporal Ron Decker, who is in the patrol division-SCSO’s K-9 Handler, drug intervention and community outreach events; Deputy Rusty Wilson, who is a paramedic with Sebastian County EMS and SWAT Tactical EMS team member. We still do not know the name of the deputy that shot the suspect, however. We do know he was was placed on paid administrative leave. Those injured were taken to Mercy Hospital where they were treated for minor injuries and released.
Certainly, the location and timing of the tragic shooting of Deputy Bill Cooper, rang all too familiar to law enforcement. “Certainly it is still fresh in our minds,” Sebastian County Sheriff Bill Hollenbeck said. “God gave us a special blessing last night.” Hollenbeck went on to add his condolences to Boden’s family.