Helena-West Helena police capture suspect accused of leaving man dead in doorway

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HELENA-WEST HELENA, Ark. — Investigators in Helena-West Helena have arrested the last suspect connected to the murder of a 62-year-old man. Steven Baylark was found dead in the doorway of his home Friday morning and early on police identified one of the suspects as Derian Troope. WREG went along as officers tried to track him down on Monday. The search for Troope started on Walnut Street. “We are going to do whatever we need to bring this guy into custody,” Helena-West Helena Police Chief James Smith said. “Mr. Baylark was a great guy in the community. He tried to help everybody.” Police said Troope didn’t work alone. They’ve already arrested Latasha Thrift and Christopher Mayfield for playing a part in the murder. “We think these individuals believed Mr. Baylark had come into a large sum of money and attempted to rob him,” Chief Smith said.
Baylark was left lying in his doorway from around 11 p.m. Thursday until just before 9 a.m. on Friday. That’s when a relative finally found him and called 911. Investigators said the suspects were Baylark’s neighbors. Investigators looked high and low for Troope, but they didn’t have any luck on Walnut Street while we were there. Several hours later though, that all changed According to a post from Mayor Kevin Smith, police executed a search warrant at a home in the 1000 block of Walnut where they found Troope. He was taken to the Lee County Jail before his scheduled court appearance. “This operation was carried out entirely by our Chief and the HWHPD,” said Smith. “Our Chief personally staked out one suspect and apprehended her after a chase began on foot. Great job and thank you to all our troops involved in solving this case, and especially to those citizens who helped us with information. So far we have had four homicides this year and the suspects involved in all four are in custody and off the streets. Swift and effective police work has made the difference each time, as well as those citizens working cooperatively with us.”

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