Former Shannon Hills Police chief dies in fire

Sarah Perry
Staff Writer

The body of former Shannon Hills Police Chief Bobby Hale, 52, was found inside a home that caught fire Wednesday at 11400 Charlotte Drive in Shannon Hills.

The body has been sent to the Arkansas State Crime Lab to determine the manner and cause of the death, said Liz Chapman, spokesperson for the Arkansas State Police.

According to a statement from Capt. William McCullar of the Shannon Hills Fire Department, when firefighters were notified of the fire, they also were notified that a person was possibly trapped inside the home.

“An initial attack (on the fire) was made while simultaneously searching the residence,” McCullar said. “We would like to extend our deepest sympathies to the family in their darkest hour.”

The Arkansas State Police Criminal Investigation Division and the Arkansas state fire marshal’s office are investigating the incident.

Firefighters from Northeast Saline,Crystal, Alexander, Bryant and Collegeville fire departments responded to the incident.

Shannon Hills Police Chief Allan Spears said he and Hale worked together for years.

“He was a great person, and he will be missed by many,” Spears said.

Hale was hired to serve as chief in 2011. He began his law enforcement career in 1984 at the age of 19 when he was hired by the Arkansas Department of Correction as a guard at Tucker Maximum Security Unit near Pine Bluff.

When Hale turned 21, he was hired by the England Police Department in Lonoke County as a patrol officer. He had worked for various other agencies include the Bald Knob Police Department, the
White County Sheriff’s Office, the Judsonia Police Department and the Mansfield Police Department.

Hale served as the Director of Information Technology for the Mansfield School District and as the head of security at the Alexander Youth Services Center in Saline County.