3 men sought after shooting, brazen car heist

Woman shot in attempted car jacking, couple have vehicle stolen in hit and run

Police are still searching for a man who shot a woman in the arm after she refused to give up her vehicle in Des Allemands and are now on the lookout for two men who crashed into a car in Destrehan before stealing it.

The Destrehan incident occurred early Sunday morning in the 100 block of Destrehan Drive. A couple, who are in their early 70s, were returning home from a casino when a light-colored SUV rammed into the back of their car at 3:15 a.m, according to Sheriff Greg Champagne.

The SUV then backed up several yards from the crash point before stopping.

“The elderly couple exited their vehicle to check for damage and the passenger of the SUV got out and began apologizing for the crash. The driver of the SUV began to apologize as well, but never fully exited the vehicle,” Champagne said.

The man who exited the SUV, described as a black male who was 6 feet tall and had dreadlocks, approached the couple’s car as if he were going to check for damage, Champagne said, but instead ran past the couple and jumped into their car.
He fled north on Destrehan Drive and turned east on Eve Street, according to the report.

“The SUV’s driver simultaneously turned its lights off, turned around and proceeded south on Destrehan Drive and then turned east on River Road,” Champagne said.

He added that authorities are unsure if there is a connection between the vehicle theft and the couple’s trip to a casino.

According to the police report, the victims’ car was in motion when the crash occurred, which is not typical of a rear end crash. Usually, the vehicle that is struck is stopped, Champagne said.

“If these circumstances exist late at night when you are involved in a crash, before exiting your vehicle you are encouraged to call 9-1-1 or continue to a well-lit area at a slow speed with your hazard lights activated prior to stopping and exiting your vehicle,” Champagne said.

Anyone with information about this car theft is asked to contact Det. Ben Schmitt at (985)783-1145 or Crime Stoppers at (504)822-1111.

In the Des Allemands incident, which police say is not related to the Destrehan car jacking, the woman told police that she was driving out of the parking lot of the Chevron gas station at 9:32 p.m. last Tuesday when a man approached her car, pointed a gun at her and tapped on her window. The woman immediately accelerated and the would-be car jacker fired two shots at her vehicle, shattering the window.

One of the bullets struck the woman in the arm, authorities said.

The suspect is described as a black man who was wearing a bandanna that partially covered his face.

“Incidents like this are very rare in St. Charles Parish,” Sgt. Dwayne LaGrange, Sheriff’s Office spokesman, said. “We’ve had armed robberies in businesses or to people who are walking, but to have someone approach a victim and then start shooting…that is extremely rare.

“We are just pleased that the victim was able to survive this ordeal.”

LaGrange said that if an armed robber approaches in this manner, the victim should comply with their demands.

“The safe thing is to give up valuables because those things can be replaced,” he said. “This was a unique situation though, because the victim was already pulling out of the parking lot when she was approached. Because she was already moving she thought she could get away by stepping on the gas.”

Anyone that has information regarding the incident is asked to contact Det. Jody Fahrig at (985)783-1135 or (985)783-6807.

 

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