Thursday, August 14, 2008

Tragedy in Arkansas

From the New York Times:

Bill Gwatney, the chairman of the Arkansas Democratic Party, was fatally shot in his office in Little Rock on Wednesday morning, police officials said.

The officials said a gunman fired several shots at Mr. Gwatney, a former state legislator, in the party’s headquarters near the Capitol. After a long car chase, the suspect was fatally wounded in a shootout with the police, the authorities said.

Bill Sadler, a spokesman for the Arkansas State Police, identified the suspect as Timothy D. Johnson, 50, of Searcy, Ark. Mr. Gwatney, 48, was rushed to the medical center of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, but a family friend who asked not to be identified said doctors determined that he was too unstable to undergo surgery. He died several hours later, police officials confirmed.

“We have no indications of motive at this time,” Lt. Terry Hastings of the Little Rock police said at an afternoon news conference.

And in the spirit of the times, right-wing blogger Michelle Malkin immediately made the event all about her.