Fort Smith man arrested after shooting injures 7 at event center, police say

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FORT SMITH, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Fort Smith Police have arrested 26-year-old Matthew Steward in connection with a New Year’s Day shooting.

Seven people were shot at an event center in Fort Smith early on New Year’s Day, according to Fort Smith Police Department spokesperson Aric Mitchell on Friday.

According to Mitchell, approximately 4:08 a.m., officers responded to a call of shots fired from The Wave event center on the 2900 block of Towson Avenue.

Upon arrival, officers discovered seven gunshot victims with what appeared to be non-life-threatening injures. Mitchell said the injuries occurred from an exchange of gunfire between at least two individuals at the event center.

Two victims remain hospitalized while the other five have been discharged from local hospitals.

Steward is charged with first-degree terroristic act, first-degree battery, and five counts of second-degree battery.

Operating as an event center, The Wave does not have to follow the same curfew requirements as night clubs, bars, or restaurants, Mitchell said.

“All agencies with interest have been notified to investigate all possible public health and other violations,” he said.

If you have any additional information, contact the Fort Smith Police Department at (479) 709-5100.

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