Deputies: Child custody visitation leads to deadly shooting

Ajante Jackson
Ajante Jackson(Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office)
Published: Oct. 19, 2022 at 4:21 PM CDT
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Information provided by Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff’s Office:

HAMMOND, La. - The Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff’s Office reports the murder of 21-year-old Howard Watkins, Jr of Hammond, Louisiana, after he was shot during an altercation stemming from a child custody visitation yesterday (Oct. 18, 2022).

Chief Jimmy Travis reports Watkins was shot and killed by 25-year-old Ajante Jackson, also of Hammond, while Jackson was visiting his children. According to detectives, Jackson shares two children with a female acquaintance of Watkins’, and had requested to see his children. Upon the arrival to the meeting location, Jackson opened fire on Watkins’ vehicle which was occupied by him, the female acquaintance, and the two children. Watkins quickly fled to his father’s residence on Happywoods Road near the intersection of Club Deluxe Road, while Jackson and 20-year-old Chardonay Washington of Hammond, Louisiana were tailing behind.

Chardonay Washington
Chardonay Washington(Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff's Office)

Once at the residence of his father, Watkins was met once again by Jackson where a physical altercation ensued in the driveway. Jackson then shot Watkins, who continued to fight him. Watkins’s father, Howard Watkins, Sr., observed his son get shot and came to the aid of his son armed with a knife. As Watkins, Sr. attempted to defend his son, Jackson turned the gun on Senior and shot him also. Jackson and Washington fled the scene to East Jefferson Hospital where he was eventually transferred to University Hospital for injuries sustained during the incident.

Upon being released, Jackson and Washington were both taken into custody by the Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office. At this time, Washington has been booked into the Tangipahoa Parish Jail, while Jackson is still in the Orleans Parish Prison awaiting transfer to Tangipahoa Parish.

Ajante Jackson is being charged with the following:

(1) count Second-Degree Murder

(2) counts Attempted Second-Degree Murder

(2) counts Cruelty to Juveniles

(1) count Convicted Felon in Possession of a Firearm

Chardonay Washington is being charged with the following:

(1) count Principle to Second-Degree Murder

(2) counts Principle to Attempted Second-Degree Murder

(1) count Obstruction of Justice - Evidence Tampering

Also taken into custody during the investigation was 27-year-old Jemario Dyson of Kentwood, LA for:

(1) count Resisting an Officer by Force or Violence

(1) count Disturbing the Peace

(1) count Battery of a Police Officer

At this time, Watkins, Sr. is not being charged with any crime, and according to witnesses, Watkins, Jr. was unarmed throughout the incident.

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