LRPD Chief responds to ‘Emergency Lights’ Controversy

Local News


LITTLE ROCK, Ark.- Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s visit to North Little Rock had traffic backed up in all directions leading up to Verizon Arena. 

Little Rock Police Chief Keith Humphrey says he was invited by the Secret Service to the event. 

His arrival to the arena was met with claims by witnesses that he used his lights to get through traffic.

One text we received says — “I don’t know about the SS invite but he used his lights and siren at least twice getting through traffic on Broadway.”

“It’s a clear abuse of power and it’s just plain not right,” Jimmie Cavin said. 

Cavin calls himself an advocate for police officers, when we talked to him last week, he told us he was made aware of the situation by officers working the event.

This text reads, “We see a black SUV several blocks away using lights and sirens to get through heavy traffic….”

We reached out to LRPD before we did the original story, asking for a comment.  

Chief Humphrey responded two days later on social media with this video showing him on Washington — not Broadway — saying he turned on his lights to get an officer’s attention to move through a barricade. 

“I did keep my lights on because I was driving down the pathway to the Verizon center there were additional barricades because people were walking,” Chief Humphrey said. 

After reviewing new traffic camera video we just received, timecodes on Broadway show an SUV at exactly 5:30 p.m.

The video on Washington shows an SUV at 5:31 p.m. 

“If you knew the configuration of the streets there, there is no way that I could have been at Broadway and Magnolia,” Chief Humphrey said. 

Chief Humphrey also showed us the back of his SUV with lights on which are different than the ones in the video on Broadway. 

“I have no control over what happened on Broadway and Magnolia, I don’t know why someone would say that was me,” he said.

 Despite the allegations, cameras told a clearer picture that the Chief hopes he can put behind him. 

“Thank goodness for technology because now it shows, I hope I’m exonerated,” the police chief says.

Original Story:

NORTH LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Accusations against Little Rock Police Chief Keith Humphrey surface after multiple law enforcement witnesses claim they saw him activate his lights and sirens to bypass traffic to Verizon Arena.

Last Tuesday, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg made her appearance at Verizon Arena, making for crowded streets and heavy traffic.

Which made it easy to spot an unmarked dark SUV driving down Broadway with lights and sirens, according to sources.

The person inside the SUV they said was LRPD Chief Keith Humphrey.

“It’s a clear abuse of power and it’s just plain not right.,” Jimmie Cavin, an advocate for police officers said.

Cavin was made aware of the situation by officers working the event.

“He is the one who’s supposed to set the example, and it’s a pretty poor one so far,” Cavin said.

According to Arkansas law, “the driver of any authorized emergency vehicle shall not assume any special privilege…” except when in response to an emergency.

Also, according to LRPD policy, the decision to drive under emergency conditions is discretionary and “shall be made only when the call involves a life-threatening situation or a violent crime in progress.”

“When they see leadership doing that, it’s disheartening,” Cavin said.

An email conversation between Cavin and Chief Humphrey states the Chief was invited to the event by the secret service and only utilized his lights to get an officers attention who was working a barricade.

Though officers on site say otherwise.

Violating laws, policies and Cavin says, trust in the community.

Officers who have violated this policy in the past are suspended.

LRPD has not responded to our request for comment.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss

Trending Stories

Trending Stories