BAKER, LA (WAFB) - East Baton Rouge Parish District Attorney Hillar Moore confirmed Thursday that an officer with the Baker Police Department, who was arrested back in April for reportedly covering up details in an investigation into shots fired, will not face criminal charges.
The officer, Sgt. Adam Procell, was arrested for allegedly withholding details in an investigation about shots that were fired at the Walmart in Baker in April.
Moore says his office found that Procell did not break any laws during the incident. He will not be facing charges of malfeasance in office.
The report states that on April 27 just before 10 a.m., detectives were summoned by Baker Police Chief Carl Dunn to investigate the actions of Sgt. Adam Procell, in reference to a shooting that resulted in a store window being struck at the Walmart in Baker on Plank Rd.
The report reveals that Sgt. Procell gave conflicting statements about what happened. Sgt. Procell claimed during the investigation that "he did not remember" and offered up his body cam footage.
Once on the scene, Sgt. Procell and other officers heard approximately ten gunshots, then cleared the area and discovered three suspects in the woods, who they detained. Officers were not able to find any weapons on the scene. Once determining the shots had come from a different direction, officers began going door-to-door on Lake Mary Dr. nearby.
In the report, Sgt. Procell reportedly said he knocked on the door of Ben Gautreaux's home and spoke with him, where Gautreaux reportedly admitting to shooting a snake. Sgt. Procell reported conducting a search of the area and said he found .223 caliber shell casings. Sgt. Procell reportedly asked Gautreaux if he had killed the snake and Gautreaux claimed he missed. Sgt. Procell then reportedly told Gautreaux "no harm, no foul" since no one was hurt.
Sgt. Procell however claimed that the three suspects in the woods admitted to shooting a rifle into the ground at a snake and that he never read them their Miranda rights.
Sgt. Procell also reportedly said to detectives that "due to his interest in the sheriff's office and everything," he was going to do the report for the alarm at Walmart and another officer was going to do the report about the shooting. Sgt. Procell also reportedly said that he was "not going to do anything anyway."
Detectives reviewed the details of the case, as well as other officers' body cam footage and determined there were many inconsistencies in Sgt. Procell's report. Detectives saw Gautreaux's wife in the footage say that Ben's son had just got a brand new gun and wanted to shoot it and that Ben said that he could shoot it in the backyard.
Detectives also learned from the body cam footage that after the officers learned the shooter's identity, Sgt. Procell reportedly said "he was not going to say nothing." Sgt. Procell also reportedly told Gautreaux that "the Louisiana Revised Statute for Illegal Discharge of a Firearm was bullsh**." Detectives also discovered Sgt. Procell told Gautreaux that at first he thought homeless people were shooting and Gautreaux replied, "Nah, that was us!"
Sgt. Procell is facing charges of malfeasance in office and obstruction of justice. He bonded out on Friday afternoon around 3 p.m.