Violence erupts in BR over holiday weekend - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Violence erupts in BR over holiday weekend

Posted: Updated:

By Keitha Nelson - bio | email

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - It was a violent Labor Day weekend in Baton Rouge, as police handled eight separate shooting incidents since Friday. Two people lost their lives and several others were seriously injured.

Darius Byrd, 18, was shot and killed Saturday evening. Police said a group of men drove up and gunned him down on North 23rd Street while he walked to a neighborhood store.

Police believe Leandre Belle and Ferrento Joshua robbed someone at La Quinta Inn on South Acadian Thruway early Saturday morning. Officers said about an hour later, around 5 a.m., the two men struck again. This time the robbery turned deadly. Christopher Domingue, the brother-in-law of Baton Rouge Police Chief Jeff LeDuff, was shot and killed on West Roosevelt Street.

Just minutes after Byrd's death, police said an 18-year-old woman and a 21-year-old man were found shot multiple times inside a car on Fig Street. They were rushed to the hospital and at last check were both in critical condition.

Shots also rang out Saturday night on Cezanne Street, hitting one person and hitting another on Lewis Street. Those victims' injuries were not life-threatening.

Three people were shot at the Charcoal Lounge on Plank Road around midnight. No one was killed in that shooting.

A security guard was also shot just after midnight on Florida Boulevard. His injuries were not life-threatening either.

Police are still searching for Darrell Garner, the man accused of shooting his estranged wife and her boyfriend early Friday morning inside Baton Rouge General Medical Center-Mid City. Family members said Kwonesha Garner, who was shot in the arm, is doing better. Her boyfriend, who was shot in the head and arm, is still in the hospital.

On a small bench outside of her daughter's home, Geraldine Byrd shared old stories about her eldest grandson. Calling him a knuckle head at times, with a smile, Byrd said she was proud of him.

"He was trying to make a turnaround," Byrd said of her grandson.

He was recently accepted into a program at Louisiana Technical College, where he started welding classes on Aug. 30.

"I know in my heart that he changed his lifestyle around," Byrd said.

Byrd remembered hearing the news from her daughter.

"She said, 'Momma, they killed my baby.' I said, 'How, why, what happened?'" Byrd explained.

Several others in the Baton Rouge area are asking those same questions.

Byrd's grandmother said thinking about all the shootings around town brought tears to her eyes.

"Now that this has happened to us, it's a wakeup call for everybody," she said.

Chief Jeff LeDuff released a statement following his brother-in-law's shooting death.

"This reminds us that violent crime affects us all," he wrote. "None of us are immune. And today my family is suffering and grieving our loss, just as so many others have. All we can do is continue to work together as a community to try and find some way to stop this senseless, wasteful killing."

Copyright 2010 WAFB. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow