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Malvern men charged in shooting death of Nashville man


By John Balch

News-Leader staff

HOT SPRINGS – The two men arrested in connection with the shooting death of a Nashville man in May were officially charged June 24 in Garland County Circuit Court.

Charged are Tommy Eddie Woodfork, III, 19, and Kaylen Dantrell Damion Burks, 23, both of Malvern.

Woodfork is charged with murder in the first-degree, terroristic threatening and first-degree battery. Burks is charged with being an accomplice to first-degree murder, terroristic threatening and battery.

The charges stem from an incident that happened shortly before midnight Sunday, May 12 in the 100 block of Lily Ruth Court in Hot Springs and resulted in the death of Donyell “Head” King, 23, of Nashville. King’s father, Donald King, 50, of Nashville, was also injured in the shooting incident.

According to case records, when Hot Springs officers arrived on the scene they found Donyell King in the driver’s seat of his car with gunshot wounds to his face and shoulder. His mother, Shaunelle King, was in the car with her son when police arrived.

The elder King was found nearby with a gunshot wound to his back. His injuries were considered non-life threatening and both were transported to an area hospital where the son died of his injuries.

According to a witness, Whitney Finley, who is Donyell King’s sister, she and her friend, Burks, were with her family on Mother’s Day when she and her brother reportedly got into an altercation. Burks eventually became involved and after the incident was broken up he and the sister left.

Finley told investigators that Burks was upset about being “punked out” and he made some calls that led to a return trip to Lily Ruth Court.

“She said they met up with a group of people in downtown Hot Springs and planned on going back to Lily Ruth Court to fight,” according to case information.

Once back at the scene, Burks along with a subject later identified as Woodfork allegedly approached Donyell King’s vehicle and began arguing with him.

“She said within seconds the black male with dreads pulled out a handgun and fired shots at Donyell.” Burks and Woodfork reportedly fled the area immediately.

Another subject, Ashley Smith, was at the scene and fled with Woodfork, who she allegedly identified later as the shooter.

The cases against Woodfork and Burks in Garland County were sealed shortly after being filed.

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