Deputies cleared after taser sparks fire that burns homeowner

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ALEXANDRIA, La. – The district attorney’s office in Alexandria has dismissed charges against two sheriff’s deputies.

Officials say the case began in November when deputies were called to 75-year-old Walter Hopkins’ home. Witnesses called police after Hopkins allegedly threatened several neighbors and the mailman.

When deputies arrived at his home, they say Hopkins came to the door with a knife.

When one of Hopkins’ relatives couldn’t calm him down and coax him out of the house, deputies kicked in the door.

In that instant, authorities told KALB Hopkins attempted to attack them with the weapon.

As a deputy fired a taser at Hopkins, he reportedly pulled out a cup of gasoline, which sparked a fire.

Hopkins and two deputies were burned by the blaze, which also destroyed the home.

Fire marshals initially charged Hopkins with attempted first-degree murder, resisting an officer, attempted battery and hate crimes.

However, a grand jury decided to indict the two deputies who responded to the scene for negligent injury.

The district attorney investigated and decided to dismiss the indictment against the deputies