Friends and colleagues remember fallen Arkansas deputy killed in - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Friends and colleagues remember fallen Arkansas deputy killed in line of duty

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Pete Richardson, 50 (Source: Lafayette County Sheriff's Office) Pete Richardson, 50 (Source: Lafayette County Sheriff's Office)
The scene of a car wreck that killed Deputy Pete Richardson Monday. The scene of a car wreck that killed Deputy Pete Richardson Monday.
Michael Ackart, 28 (Source: Miller County Jail) Michael Ackart, 28 (Source: Miller County Jail)
LAFAYETTE CO., AR (KSLA) -

A Lafayette County, AR deputy will be laid to rest tomorrow after he was killed on the job earlier this week.

Some of those who knew Chief Deputy Pete Richardson best said getting past the loss of the popular law enforcement officer has been difficult.

"It has been very hurtful," said Karen Soils, Lafayette County sheriff's dispatcher. "We are doing all that we can do to hold up."

Soils was the dispatcher on duty when Richardson was killed. She said her fellow employee and friend had just left the sheriff's department before the call came in.

"It is just hard to wrap your head around it that somebody you were here with working with literally one minute and the next minute they are gone," she said.

Richardson was killed in a car wreck Monday as he was taking a homeless man to a Miller County shelter. Police said Michael Ackart, 28 of Tulsa, OK grabbed the steering wheel, forcing Richardson into oncoming traffic.

The vehicle was hit by an 18-wheeler and Richardson was pronounced dead at the scene. He was a 19-year-veteran who had aspirations of becoming the next sheriff.

Friends are trying to move on, but finding it hard to understand.

"It is affecting all the offices and just friends, he had a lot of friends, and we are just devastated," said Maebell Pierson, deputy district clerk for Lafayette County courts.

Friday, deputies were preparing Richardson's class "A" uniform for Saturday's memorial service. The uniform will be presented to Richardson's wife.

Meanwhile, the door to the chief deputy's office remains locked as memorials continue to arrive in support of the fallen friend, colleague and loved one.

The memorial service is scheduled for 11 a.m. March 22 at the First Baptist Church in Stamps, AR. Extra chairs have been brought in to seat more than 500 people.

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