Dumas man killed in alleged robbery attempt

DMUAS — A Dumas man who allegedly tried to rob the owner of a downtown drug store early Friday morning was shot to death by the owner, according to Dumas Police.

Investigator Chuck Blevins said Tavell Lawson, 31, was pronounced dead at the scene after after he allegedly confronted Bill Canada, the owner of Meadow’s Pharmacy.

According to Blevins, Canada was just opening up the pharmacy when an armed man wearing a mask, later identified as Lawson, came around the corner of the building and demanded money. Blevins said Canada began backing up and when Lawson advanced on him, Canada fired a shot from his gun, striking Lawson.

Blevins said the call came in at 5:37 a.m. He said the pharmacy, located at 101 W. Waterman St., commonly opens early. Several other people in the Dumas area said the pharmacy was a gathering place for people to drink coffee in the early morning.

Lawson’s body was sent to the Arkansas State Crime Laboratory for an autopsy.

Canada was not injured and no charges have been filed in the case, pending further investigation.

Blevin said a case file will be compiled and sent to Prosecuting Attorney Thomas Deen for his review.