Calvin Salyers is an Arkansas police officer who fatally shot another Scott Hutton, a fellow Alexander officer, through the door of his home after Hutton knocked on his door to pick up a patrol car, authorities say. Salyers previously threatened to shoot Black Lives Matter and anti-police protesters if they came to his house in a conversation with a supervisor, according to court documents obtained by Heavy.
The Arkansas State Police investigated the June 3 shooting and charged the 33-year-old Salyers with manslaughter on July 7, according to a press release. Salyers, who goes by Nick Salyers, turned himself in on July 8. Hutton, a 36-year-old Army veteran, was shot multiple times by a Glock handgun at Salyers’ Evergreen Drive home in Alexander, state police said in a previous release. Hutton was taken to a local hospital, where he died of his wounds.
Alexander Police and department and city leaders have not commented about Salyers’ arrest. Salyers could also not be released for comment and it was not immediately clear if he has hired an attorney. On June 4, Alexander Police wrote on Facebook, “It is with a heavy heart that we have to announce the passing of one of our officers. Officer Scott Hutton was accidentally shot and killed by a fellow, off-duty, officer last night. Arkansas State Police is conducting the investigation. Please keep both families and our department in your prayers.”
The post added, “We would also like to give thanks to the Arkansas State Police, Saline County Sheriff’s Office and Bryant Police Department for your response and support during this time. RIP brother. We will take it from here.”
Here’s what you need to know about Calvin “Nick” Salyers and the fatal shooting of Scott Hutton:
1. Salyers Was Heard on a 911 Call After the Shooting Saying, ‘All I Seen Was a Gun, It Was an Accidental Discharge’
Hutton went to Salyers house to pick up a patrol car that was parked in a metal building next to the residence, according to court documents. He was dressed ion a black polo-type shirt, khaki tacital pants and had a typical police-style gun belt with a badge next to his holstered firearm, according to court documents.
Hutton called Salyers about 7:09 p.m. on June 3, but it wasn’t answered, according to court documents. He then texted Salyers asking, “are you awake?” and pulled into his driveway about 7:12 p.m., police said. He walked up to the porch and knocked on the front door. Salyers, who was off duty, was inside with his girlfriend watching a movie on the couch, according to court documents. Arkansas State Police wrote in an affidavit:
When they heard the knock, Salyers told (his girlfriend) that he would see who it was and grabbed his Glock .40 caliber handgun and went to the door. According to his statement, he looked through the peep hole and saw a figure standing on his porch with a dark shirt and a gun on his hip. Salyers stated that he transferred his weapon from his right hand into his left hand and reached for the door knob and as he opened the door, the gun went off, firing a round through the front door. As Salyers opened the door, Hutton fell off the porch. According to Salyers’ statement he realized it was Hutton only after he fell from the porch.
A 911 call was made after the shooting by Salyers, who told a dispatcher he was an Alexander Police Officer and they needed an ambulance because an officer was down. Salyers was asked who had been shot and Salyers told him it was Sutton. He is heard on the call saying, “all I seen was a gun, it was an accidental discharge,” according to court documents.
Police said there was a single bullet hole in the front door of Salyers’ home near the peep hole. Investigators said it appeared to travel through the main door and the glass of the storm door. According to investigators, the bullet hole had contact residue, indicating the gun was pressed against the door when it was fired. “Powder burns and a C-Shape ring of residue were left around the hole,” police said.
Hutton was shot in the upper right chest, and the bullet traveled across his body and entered and exited his heart, then wedged under his skin, police said. “Based on Officer Hutton’s injury, it was likely he was standing at an angle and not squarely facing the door,” according to court documents. Salyers tried to provide aid to Hutton after he was shot, according to police.
2. Salyers Told a Sergeant He Would ‘Shoot Through the Door’ if Protesters Came to His Home
According to court documents, Salyers had made threats toward protesters while talking about the protests and riots in Minneapolis with another officer in the weeks before the fatal shooting. Police said in court documents that Alexander Training Sergeant Matt Wharton told investigators when the riots were starting, “if any protesters came to his residence he would ‘shoot through the door.'”
Wharton told police he instructed Salyers he couldn’t do that because it was reckless and negligent. “Wharton stated that they could not shoot anyone without identifying them first and identify that there was a threat,” police said in court documents.
Arkansas State Police Special Agent Ryan Jacks said in his affidavit, “After all the investigation was complete, I presented a complete case file to the Saline County Prosecutor’s (office) … the evidence indicated (Salyers) acted recklessly on the night of June 3, 2020, which resulted in a firearm being discharged through the door of his residence which struck Alexander Police Officer Scott Hutton in the chest, causing his death.”
3. Salyers Has Been a Police Officer in Alexander, Arkansas, Since 2017 & Worked as a K-9 Officer
Salyers has been an officer with the Alexander Police Department since 2017, according to court documents. He worked as a K-9 officer, according to an April Facebook post about a drug arrest. The post showed Salyers with his K-9, Leo, and drugs, money and weapons seized during the incident. Salyers was also highlighted in a weekly roundup days before the shooting for arresting a woman who he said had marijuana in her car, according to the Facebook post.
A 2017 Facebook post from the Alexander Police Department shows Salyers was previously a reserve police officer for the agency. It is not clear how long he was a reserve officer or what Salyers did before becoming a full-time officer with the department.
Salyers is an Arkansas native, according to public records. He had been placed on paid administrative leave while the investigation was ongoing. Officials did not immediately say if Salyers remained on leave or if he was fired after his arrest.
4. Salyers Was Released From the Saline County Jail After Posting $15,000 Bond & He Could Face 3 to 10 Years in Prison if Convicted of Manslaughter
Salyers turned himself in to state police investigators at the Saline County Jail on Saturday, July 8. He was booked and quickly released on $15,000 bond, according to jail records. He spent less than a day in jail, records show. Salyers is barred from possessing weapons and from having contact with the Hutton family, according to court documents.
Salyers was charged with manslaughter, a class C felony. According to Arkansas state law, a class C felony carries a potential sentence
It is not clear if Salyers has hired an attorney to represent him in the case. A call by Heavy to a phone number for Salyers listed in court documents was not immediately returned. The case is being prosecuted by Saline County deputy prosecutor Rebecca Bush. Her office has also not commented on the case. Salyers was scheduled to appear in circuit court in Benton on September 21 after making his first court appearance on July 13.
5. A GoFundMe Has Been Started to Help Hutton’s Family
A GoFundMe has been set up to help Scott Hutton’s wife, Brittany Hutton, and family and it was shared by the Alexander Police Department on Facebook after his death. The campaign has raised nearly $14,000. Hutton was a Mississippi native and served two tours in the U.S. Army National Guard.
“After being medically retired he had just achieved his dream of becoming a police officer,” the GoFundMe says. He and his wife had been married for five years. He is also survived by his parents, Herman Hutton and Carolyn Harvey Hutton.
Alexander Mayor Paul Mitchell said in a statement, “As mayor of the city of Alexander, I grieve for the loss of our police officer Scott Hutton. I did not get to know him very well as I have with others because of COVID-19 and the office personnel being reduced to a minimum for several weeks. I do know that he was the best-of-the-best or he would not have been with our city police department.”
Mitchell added, “I thank him for his service to our country and to our city. Words cannot express my sorrow and I cannot begin to even understand how his family and friends must feel at this time. Our city is here to help the family in this time of need. Our prayers are with the family. May God bless each and every one of the family members at this time. We are here for you.”