WEST BATON ROUGE PARISH, LA (WAFB) - A West Baton Rouge grand jury determined Wednesday there was not enough evidence to formally charge a reserve Addis police officer in connection to the accidental shooting that killed his wife.
The grand jury returned a no true bill verdict for Ivy Thibodeaux, 29, on the charge of negligent homicide in the death of Emiley Gassie Thibodeaux, 23.
On February 5, Louisiana State Police reported that Emiley Thibodeaux, who was a teacher at Holy Family School, was shot while her husband of just eight months, who goes by "Trey," was allegedly cleaning his gun and accidentally fired.
Troopers said the shooting happened in the 3600 block of East Nic Drive in Addis just before 3:45 p.m. They added Emiley Thibodeaux was rushed to the hospital where she later died.
"It's a question of what the facts dictated," said Tony Clayton, lead prosecutor on the case. "I mean it was just a set of facts that a prosecutor could not make the call on so it had to be made by the people of this parish, and the issue is whether or not his negligence, which he was negligent, whether or not it rose to the level of criminal negligence."
"I wish he would talk to me and say that he did it and there's no excuse for it and that he's truly sorry," said Emiley's mother, Janet Gassie, when asked what she would say to Thibodeaux.
After the grand jury returned the verdict, Thibodeaux's grandparents said they were proud of him and relieved.
Because Thibodeaux is a reserve officer for the Addis Police Department, LSP was called in to investigate. Nearly three months later, LSP wrapped up its case and handed it over to the District Attorney's office.
"State Police, in my opinion, has thoroughly vetted this file," Clayton said in an interview with the Investigators.
However, the entire time State Police investigated the incident, Thibodeaux was never arrested.
Clayton said that if the grand jury had indicted Thibodeaux with negligent homicide, he would have asked a judge to issue a warrant for Thibodeaux's arrest.
Thibodeaux is still a reserve police officer for the Addis Police Department, but Chief Ricky Anderson said he is on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.
The Investigators caught up with Emiley's mother, Janet Gassie, who visits her daughter's grave every day.