An Arkansas police officer who allegedly told a colleague that he’d shoot through the door if any protesters came to his home has been charged with manslaughter in the fatal shooting of a fellow officer who knocked on his door, authorities said Thursday.
Calvin “Nick” Salyers, a 33-year-old officer in the Little Rock suburb of Alexander, surrendered on Wednesday in the June 3 fatal shooting of Officer Scott Hutton, the state police said.
On June 3, Hutton had driven to Salyers’ home shortly after 7 p.m. to pick up a patrol car from Salyers, which was parked inside a metal structure nearby, Ryan Jacks, an investigator with the Arkansas State Police, wrote in an arrest affidavit.
When Hutton arrived at Salyers’ home, he texted him, “are you awake,” according to Jacks. When he didn’t get a response, Hutton walked to the front door and knocked. Inside, Salyers was watching a movie with his girlfriend, Ashlee Cummings. He was off duty at the time.
Salyers told investigators he grabbed his handgun before he went to the door and saw a figure on his porch wearing a dark shirt and with a gun on his hip.
Salyers told investigators his gun went off when he transferred it from his right to his left hand and reached for the doorknob. On a 911 call, Salyers can be heard saying, “All I seen was a gun, it was an accidental discharge,” the affidavit said.
A judge set a $15,000 bond for Salyers, who was released from jail later Wednesday. A man who answered the number listed for Salyers in his arrest affidavit said it wasn’t the officer’s. Alexander Police Department didn’t immediately reply to a phone message seeking further information.
A training sergeant with Alexander Police said Salyers told him at the beginning of protests over the death of George Floyd that he would “shoot through the door” if any protesters showed up at his home, according to the affidavit. The sergeant said he told Salyers that he couldn’t do that because it would be reckless and negligent.
The day after the shooting, the Alexander Police Department announced Hutton’s death on Facebook, writing he had been killed “in the line of duty.”
Salyers has been an officer with the Alexander Police Department since 2017.