Acen King shooting update: Suspect Gary Holmes arrested in death of Arkansas 3-year-old


A suspect has been arrested in the death of Acen King, the three-year-old in Little Rock, Arkansas, shot dead in a "road rage" incident over the weekend. 

Local NBC affiliate KARK reports suspect Gary Holmes surrendered to police Thursday evening and was booked into the Pulaski County Jail. Holmes is being held on charges of capital murder and two counts of terroristic acts.


In the Dec. 17 incident, Holmes allegedly opened fire on the car of King's grandmother, Kim King-Macon, because she "wasn't moving fast enough at a stop sign," Little Rock police Lt. Steve McClanahan said at the time. The toddler, who was in the backseat, was struck by Holmes' bullet and rushed to the hospital, where he died.

"I was at the stop sign and the guy blew a horn at me and I blew it back, and he shot, but I thought it was in the air," King-Macon described in a 911 call released by police. "He shot at the car!"

A GoFundMe page has been set up for King's family in response to the tragedy, which has raised over $4,000 at time of writing.

Prior to Holmes's arrest, the city of Little Rock and the FBI offered a $40,000 reward for information leading to the shooter's capture. U.S. Marshals worked with Holmes' parents to facilitate the suspect's surrender, KARK reports.

Following the suspect's arrest, Little Rock Police Chief Kenton Buckner expressed his anguish over the toddler's death, Arkansas Online reported. About the incident and ensuing arrest, Buckner said:

It makes me feel good about Little Rock that our community came together. It makes me feel good about folks providing information, and it makes me feel good that our police agency stayed on top of this and are able to give the family some kind of peace before they bury him. ... But I hate that we had to get to Acen King before we, as a community, came to together to hate and be disgusted by the loss of human life. Because there are 39 other killings in Little Rock this year, and the pain of those families is no less.

The suspect has a history of previous charges, KARK reporter Mitchell McCoy reported on Twitter, including charges of aggravated robbery and battery in 2002 and domestic battery in 2010. Holmes may face the death penalty for King's death if convicted, the New York Daily News noted.