Former campaign staffer held in shooting death of ex-Arkansas state senator: reports

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A former campaign staffer has been arrested in connection with this month's shooting death of former Arkansas state Sen. Linda Collins-Smith, according to reports.

Arkansas State Police identified the suspect as Rebecca Lynn O’Donnell, 48, of Pocahontas, Ark., and said that criminal charges were pending, FOX 16 of Little Rock reported.

Arkansas State Police have not released the connection between O’Donnell and Collin-Smith but a former communications director for the former Republican state senator told Little Rock's KTHV-TV that O’Donnell had worked on Collins-Smith’s most recent campaign and the two were friends.

The Randolph County sheriff confirmed to Little Rock’s FOX 16 that this photo is of Linda Collins-Smith (left) and suspect Rebecca Lynn O’Donnell. (Facebook)

No further details about the circumstances of the arrest, or a possible motive, were immediately available.

Collins-Smith, 57, was found with a fatal gunshot wound at her Pocahontas home on June 4, the Arkansas Democrat Gazette reported. The Republican represented the 19th district in Arkansas from 2014 until 2019 until she lost a primary election last year.

Arkansas police said the investigation is ongoing.

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