UPDATE: Scott County Sheriff drowns during rescue, 3 others still missing
Y CITY (KATV) - A daring rescue attempt left four dead, including Scott County Sheriff Cody Carpenter.
According to Keith Stevens with the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, Sheriff Carpenter drowned during a rescue at Fouche Lafaye River. A wildlife officer who accompanied Carpenter on the boat during the rescue is still missing and feared dead as well.
The rescue started Thursday night after the two women made a frantic 911 call around midnight saying rising waters had trapped them in a home near the intersection of Highways 71 and 270. That home is no longer there.
"Other deputies on scene heard a loud crash," said Sebastian County Sheriff Bill Hollenbeck. "They thought that the bridge had actually crashed. Looking into it further, they discovered the house had imploded as a direct result of rising water from Mell Creek."
As waters receded throughout the day Friday, Sheriff Carpenter's body was found about a mile downstream from where the rescue attempt took place. Rescuers also found the motor, some debris, and contents from the boat but Wildlife Officer Joel Campora and the two women they were trying to save are still missing.
"All I can say is to ask everyone for their thoughts and prayers to be with the wildlife officer and his family," said Game & Fish Director Mike Knoedl. "He was the epitome of what a wildlife officer should be and he was doing what he was trained to do [Thursday] night."
More than 200 volunteers and rescue workers from the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission, Scott County Sheriff's Office, Arkansas State Police and Arkansas National Guard are helping with the search. A helicopter and cadaver dogs were also called in to help the search effort.