Saturday, July 5, 2014

Louisiana: Update--One Shooter, Age 20, in Gunfight Extradited from Mississippi, Others Sought

According to The Associated Press, a suspect was arrested Friday (July 4) in connection with a gunfight that erupted on Bourbon Street on Sunday night (June 29) that killed one bystander and wounded nine others on  New Orleans' Bourbon Street.

Police chief Ronal Serpas said Trung T. Le, 20, was arrested Friday afternoon in Mississippi. He will be extradited to Louisiana, where he faces one charge of first-degree murder and nine charges of attempted first-degree murder. The assailant is a resident of New Orleans.
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Police said Le is believed to have fired the first shot in an exchange of gunfire that shattered the good-time atmosphere early Sunday in the French Quarter. Serpas said police are still working to identify another person involved in the gunfight.

Stressing that police know who Le’s associates are, Serpas issued a warning that anyone with knowledge of the crime should come forward or face possible prosecution.

Most of those hit in the Sunday morning shooting spree were tourists to the city, including Brittany Thomas, 21, from the south Louisiana city of Hammond, who died Wednesday (July 2). Others were from Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas, Florida and Australia. One person remains hospitalized Friday in stable condition.

COMMENT: A contingent of 30 Louisiana state police troopers was assembled Wednesday in the city to help with patrols during the holiday weekend. A total of 50 state troopers and other state public safety officers would be redeployed from this weekend through Labor Day to help city police.

Landrieu earlier this week acknowledged the need to beef up a police force that has diminished over the years from around 1,600 to 1,200, adding that the City Council has approved funds to hire 150 new officers.

Police said Detective Bruce Brueggeman obtained an arrest warrant for Trung Le Friday morning. He was caught in Mississippi by members of the New Orleans police working with US marshals.